Monday, July 2, 2018

SLPCO Patricia -Knit add on Pattern Test.

                            One of my favorite aspects of sewing is pattern testing.  It's so fun!!!

   
I think one of the main reasons, is because I don't pick it, it's like a grab bag, you never know what it might be.  Several times I've tested a pattern I don't think I would have picked out on my own, and I end up LOVING it.  There have a been a few patterns I wasn't as fond of, but I try to be honest in my reviews.  Getting the pattern for free is a nice bonus as well. 

This review is for the Patricia Knit Bodice add on, from Simple Life Pattern Company.  This is a supplemental pattern to the "Patricia’s Boho High Low Top & Dress." which was originally written for woven only.  If you buy the Original and the add on, you have both options.  You can also do a knit top, with woven skirt as well. 


 

These two are my daughters current favorites.  She absolutely loves how comfy knits are.  Up until recently most of her clothes have been with cottons, so she is enjoying the change.  I will be making more of these in the future, there are several different options.





 






The first one I made for the test is the black print.  It was a cold spring so thought it would perfect  with the bell sleeves.  She wore this to school numerous times, and even for dinner last night, homemade burgers hahaha.  I chose the dramatic high low dress length, and bell sleeve options.  I love the scoop on the back neckline, but the front is high enough that there's no issue of it falling off her shoulders.











 




 
This top I made sleeveless, and 'top length' I did lengthen the back of the skirt a bit to make it even more dramatic, and was short on fabric, so it's a few inches narrower.  The ruffle is also 3.5" wide instead of 5" because I was really tight on fabric.  But I think it still looks good.  I plan on making a gathered organza skirt to go under it for a wedding we're going to later this month. 









The pattern is very well written, the institutions are easy to follow, and the pictures are clear.  If it's you're first time doing the burrito method on a sleeveless lined top, then you might need to check out youtube.  I'm a visual learner and needed more then just the pictures to wrap my head around it.  It's very simple though when you see it being done.  I'll be doing this method a lot from now. 

Like I always do on patterns for my daughter I mashed two sizes.  I used the size 6 for the width, and the 8 for length on the black one, and 10 for the length on the sleeveless.  It does sit a bit low on her hips in the back, but once the skirt is on you won't notice, and I don't want it to get too short too quick.  

It's a pretty quick sew, and since all the seams on the bodice are enclosed you don't need to worry about a serger.  (I rarely use the serger on knit clothing for my daughter she says it makes the seams scratchy, and if I just leave as is, they're more comfy).  You do need quite a bit of fabric for the skirt and ruffle depending on size so just double check the requirements before you start.  If gathering scares you there are several different methods out there that make it easier.  Here is a really poor quality video I made quickly while pattern testing to help you see my favorite method.  I find it quick, easy and pretty fool-proof.  I hate pinning and quartering so if I can avoid it I will.  Easy Gathering Video

I love a versatile pattern, this one can easily be made for season.  I look forward to making it with a nice sweater knit for fall, with leggings.  I think I need a pattern like this for me!!! Anyone testing a momma version????












Monday, October 16, 2017

Sweet Sixteen Pattern Review (Canada Cups)


Sweet Sixteen Bralette

  by Bra-Makers Supply





Happy Mail!!!! I was very exited to receive this pattern in the mail, I hadn't really looked at it before but was looking forward to reading it over, and picking fabrics and the style I wanted.  I went with the Sandra.

Be sure to scroll all the way to the bottom for a list of prizes, good luck. 
   






I was given the pattern for free for the purpose of this review.  That said all the thoughts and comments are my own, I will be giving you and open and honest review of this pattern. 








My first decision was to pick my size!!!  This pattern has a different way of choosing cup sizes, but it's said to be one of the most accurate.   You measure bottom cup depth.  Which is taking a measurement (while wearing a well fitting bra, that's not padded), and measure from the Apex (nipple) straight down to the wire line.  You find your measurement on the chart, then do another measurement from wire line to wire line across your breast at the level of the apex, then find that one on the chart, hopefully they fall into the same size. Mine did NOT!!!  Since my bottom cup depth measurement matched my usual cup size I decided to go with that.  I was using a knit fabric so figured that would take care of the discrepancy.

Next choice was fabric.  This is always the hardest for me in any project.  I usually play around with fabric combo's until it feels right.  Clothing items are even harder because you have to take into account drape, comfort and in this case support.

For my first bra decided to use cotton jersey since it was one of the recommended fabrics.  Now I know what you're all thinking WHAT??? that's not very supportive.  And you would be correct, but it was on the list in the pattern and I figure if it did work it would be really comfy.  So I got all my fabric and notions together and traced my pattern.  I used freezer paper, but you can use any white, thin paper that you can see through.  The first bra I made I used jersey fabric and a 38" H.  My under-bust measurement is 37", and since this is supposed to be comfortable I sized up as was recommended.

The jersey had WAY too much stretch in it for the weight of my breasts.  I think the pattern should reflect this, and recommend jersey only for smaller cup sizes with self supporting breasts.  Had I not been expecting this, and experimenting I would have been devastated going through all that work.   To remedy the saggy cups, I sewed two more cups out of a much less stretchy fabric, and just sewed that onto the frame.  Then I sewed it to the back of the elastic.  Not so pretty, but it worked. 


The next issue was the band it was way too big, like it didn't even touch me.  I've seen on other reviews this is an issue, I started with 38" band and ended up taking a large dart out of it on each side.  I have a flared rib cage which means I usually have to take a dart out of the top of the band, but the bottom should fit ok.  Turns out I took out 4" off the bottom of the band and 6" off the top.  I had some pretty large darts.  Once I did thisadjustment, the band fit fine.  I'm not sure why this is, if perhaps this style of bra is not really meant for larger breasted ladies who are used to a tighter fitting band???  When you try this bra out I would recommend going down a size or two in the band for sure.  I used the 34 H band for the second bra, and still needed to take the dart in on the top, but the bottom of the band fit good.



Points to consider, when you size down in the band.  If you're not sure measure the band back band, and front frame, subtracting your 1/4 seam allowances, and adding in the length of your clasp.  Just doing a quick rough estimate you should be able to see how much you need to adjust.  When I do this measurement on the pattern the size 38 comes out to 41.25" total.  The 34 came out to 37.25".  Since I measured at 37, with the elastic pulled on this band it fits comfortably.  For the elastic I wanted it a bit stronger then just the FOE, so I laid it flat and doubled it up I sewed it on, then flipped and zig zags like you would a regular bra band.  Worked out great. 



The second bra I made I'd learned my lesson.  On the website for the Sweet Sixteen class they recommend using duoplex for the cups.  I wish this recommendation had been made more prominent on the package, especially if you're new to sewing bras.  Since even with duoplex I'm not planning on this being an 'going out' bra I wanted to make it more comfortable, and when with this black knit that is very thick and has very little stretch.  I used red duoplex from Club Tissues, and power net (Bra-Makers Supply) for the back band, which I doubled up to make it stronger as recommended for larger sizes (I did this on both bras).  The rest of my supplies were either from Bra Makers Supply or salvaged off of other projects.


This bra fit MUCH better, I was very happy with it right from the start.  I did notice a bit of gaping in the under arm area, so I took a dart out of the side of the top, and tapered it down to just above the band.  I have to make this adjustment on many bra's so I wasn't surprised, I will transfer the changes over to the pattern so I don't have to go through that on my next one.

Overall:  I'm very happy with the fit of the Sweet Sixteen.  It only took 2 tries, and both are functional.  It's comfortable and holds the girls up enough for around the house.  It's also great for yoga, or walking the dog as long as I'm wearing a sweater ;).  I'm used to foam cups, so for colder weather I prefer a bit more umm uhhh coverage, if you know what I mean ;).

The instructions can be bit confusing since she gives you instructions for all 4 styles together in each step, so you have to make sure you're following the correct one, once you figure out which one, it's pretty straightforward.  I've made several bra's in the past, and have all of Beverly's bra making Craftsy videos so construction came together pretty easily. 

However if this is your first bra, then I recommend getting her first bra making class on Craftsy or perhaps watch something on YouTube to familiarize yourself with the construction. 

I have made two of her other bra's the Classic and the Shelley, but didn't really use the instructions provided, I followed along with the online class.  That said I wish the instructions were a bit more detailed, but if you need any help she's always willing to answer questions. 


I wanted my second bra to be a bit fun!!! I didn't plan on it looking so piratey, but I love it!!!  It's very fun and colorful.  I plan on making an underwire bra in the same colors.  I figured I might as well have fun with it, so decided to use contrasting threads, this was one of the scariest aspects of the entire project, since there is nooooo room for error. 

                                                Wait is that RED THREAD YIKES!!!!!!  

This was a bit scary at first, since matching color would hide a multitude of sins.  If it's your first bra, then I'd recommend blending your threads, but if you want to be daring and like the look just go slow!!! Super slow.

 YAY!!! it worked out.  I was nervous but I love the extra detail it adds to the black. I did contrasting thread on all of my seams and elastic as well. 



The most important part of the construction  to me was getting my front seam to line up.  I really wanted my cups and the top-stitching to line up exactly.  It took me a few tries to get it to work.








I recommend pinning it lengthwise along the seam-line, so that you can fold it back and double check that it's lined up, then put a few pins in crosswise to hold it in place, and slowly pull out the needles as you come to them. 






When you sew on the elastic to the cups, I pulled my elastic a wee bit for more support.  I also stretched the elastic when sewing to the side pieces. 



TIP:  Even though the pattern tells you to sew your elastic to your cup before sewing it to the band, I waited and then could sew the side elastic all at once, instead of having a bump where you overlap them. 

 






TIP:  When sewing Fold over elastic in one pass, I like to tack the first inch or so to the inside.  I just line it up with the center line, and tack it down.  



 



 

Then I'll pull it out and start sewing from the top.  This helps hold it in place so it doesn't slip out on you, really speeds up the process. 


I made a pair of matching panties for my first set, using my own self drafted pattern that I learned how to make in Beverley's underwear class on Craftsy.  I was very happy with how they turned out, and I'm please to report they're very comfy.  I struggled to get them on my other dress form, I felt like I should be on a Lucille Ball episode, I hope no one was watching outside as I was right in front of the window!!!! 




I plan on making a lovely Kaftan to match!!! I found this gorgeous sheer fabric at Club Tissus (one of our lovely sponsors for the tour.  They carry a ton of bra supplies)!!!   I can't wait to wear it around the house, or out over a tank top and leggings.  Ohh and I'll make matching panties for sure. 



I hope you've enjoyed the pattern review and decide to take a risk and make yourself a new bra!!!! Check out the other blogs on the hop today.  We're reviewing different bralette (no underwire) bra's this week ALL from Canadian designers.  Enjoy!!!!



2nd Annual Canada Cups Blog Hop


 

Tour Schedule

Hang with us as we reveal our inner secrets. ;) 

 

// Please note that none of these post links are available before the scheduled date. If you click on one too early, you will get an Error 404: Page not found. You know about those, right? // Sunday, October 15
Monday, October 16
Tuesday, October 17
Wednesday, October 18
Thursday, October 19
Friday, October 20
Saturday, October 21
Monday, October 23
  • Giveaway winners announced on all the blogs:
Little Heart Threads, Glitter in my Coffee, Michelle's Creations, Mrs. Weaver's Finest Unmentionables, Gracious Threads, Élégantine!, That's Sew Venice, Sprouting Jubejube, Flying by the Seam of my Pants, Filles à Maman

 

Prizes and Discounts

*A discount code from Funky Monkey -code: CC10 for 10% off store wide for the length of the tour.
 *A $25 Store voucher & Discount code from Fabric Please (CANADACUPS for 20% off storewide during your tour)

 There will be a Rafflecopter at the end of the tour for the following prizes.  Make sure to check back and fill out your form.  There are some really great items, that'll make your next, or perhaps first bra extra special.  

*A bra kit from Atelier Fiber Arts and Abrakdabra
*A bralette kit or scuba print from Bra-Makers Supply
*A 10% discount from Central Sewing Machines 
(The discount for Central Sewing needs orders to be emailed directly to (Muriel@centralsewing.com).)
*A pattern from Chelsea C Designs
*A Sophie swimsuit pattern from Closet Case Patterns
*1 yard of in-stock fabric from Crookshanks Custom Textiles (winner splits shipping costs)
*A $25 Store voucher & Discount code from Fabric Please (CANADACUPS for 20% off storewide during your tour)
*A pattern from Favorite Things
*A discount code from Libelle Sewing
*A bralette kit from Braphoria
*A pattern from Ohhh Lulu Sews
*A pattern from Lingerie Secrets Patterns by Jan Bones
*A discount code from Funky Monkey -code: CC10 for 10% off store wide for the length of the tour. active until the 22nd 😊 Not valid on already discounted full bolts.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Canada Cups - Coming Unwired Blog Tour

Bra's Bra's Bra's!!!!  The bane of our existence . . . or are they???  I used to hate to have to go bra shopping.   I would fling it on the railing as soon as I got home.  If someone called to go out, I'd be like "Sorry, I already took my bra off".   Scroll all the way to the bottom for a list of prizes, good luck. 


From a young age I was used to wearing a very strong industrial strength bra.  Gravity is not kind to 'blessed' girls.  I have to admit that I no longer have that love/hate relationship with bras.  Now that I've started making my own, and had the wire fitted to my breast shape, they're really comfy.  Sometimes I'll read in bed and then I'm like ohh ya "take off my bra".  I really do need an underwire to have them sitting where I want them, so I was a bit nervous when I was asked to be part of the "Canada Cups - Coming Unwired" blog tour.  I don't really wear wireless bras, and most of them do not come in a cup size I can wear, so it hasn't been available.  Well, Beverley saw a need and filled it with the Sweet Sixteen.  It was released last summer, and I hadn't tried it do to the fact that it has no wires.

I picked this pattern to review because it would be nice to have a soft bra for sleeping in while traveling, or camping, and for around the house or doing Yoga.  It actually comes in my size, and has so many different options for fabric and style.  It also includes a huge size range so you don't need multiple patterns.   
https://braandcorsetsupplies.com/product/pb-8416-sweet-sixteen-bralette-pattern-collection/

PB-8416 – Sweet Sixteen Bralette Pattern Collection
Sweet Sixteen Bralette Pattern Collection

The Sweet Sixteen Bralette Pattern Collection ranges in band sizes from 28″-38″ (71 cm-96 cm), with 12 cup sizes. 72 unique sizes in all! Make this from stretch lace, fabric, or a combination of lace and fabric.




 Stay tuned for my review.  Will it hold up???  Does it really provide support in larger cup sizes????   Is it going to be a hit or a miss?!?!? or a bit of both????


 Sweet Sixteen Pattern Review


Disclaimers

Fabrics used for my bra were from Bra Makers Supply and Club Tissues.  As one of the Canadian sponsors of our blog tour Club Tissues graciously gave us a gift certificate to try their new products.  Their website is extensive, and I enjoyed the variety.  It's very user friendly and has a great sale section.  I placed my order at 8 pm on a Wed night, it shipped the next morning and was in my mailbox Friday morning!!!! Now that's service.   The fabric is lovely, and quality is great. 


The Same can be said for Bra Makers supply, I was provided the bralette pattern free of charge in order to offer up my review.  The ladies in the store are extremely helpful, especially if you're lucky enough to live close by and can pop in for a visit and fitting.  If not they get orders in the mail right away, and after that well it's up to the Postman!!!   All fabrics and supplies are top notch, Beverly doesn't skimp on products.   Even though I didn't pay for the pattern, I will be giving an honest review!!  All thoughts are my own. 

2nd Annual Canada Cups Blog Hop

 Schedule and Prizes


Tour Schedule

Hang with us as we reveal our inner secrets. ;)

Canada Cups Tour 2017 // Please note that none of these post links are available before the scheduled date. If you click on one too early, you will get an Error 404: Page not found. You know about those, right? // Sunday, October 15
Monday, October 16
Tuesday, October 17
Wednesday, October 18
Thursday, October 19
Friday, October 20
Saturday, October 21
Monday, October 23
  • Giveaway winners announced on all the blogs:
Little Heart Threads, Glitter in my Coffee, Michelle's Creations, Mrs. Weaver's Finest Unmentionables, Gracious Threads, Élégantine!, That's Sew Venice, Sprouting Jubejube, Flying by the Seam of my Pants, Filles à Maman

 

Prizes and Discounts

*A discount code from Funky Monkey -code: CC10 for 10% off store wide for the length of the tour.
 *A $25 Store voucher & Discount code from Fabric Please (CANADACUPS for 20% off storewide during your tour)

 There will be a Rafflecopter at the end of the tour for the following prizes.  Make sure to check back and fill out your form.  There are some really great items, that'll make your next, or perhaps first bra extra special.  

*A bra kit from Atelier Fiber Arts and Abrakdabra
*A bralette kit or scuba print from Bra-Makers Supply
*A 10% discount from Central Sewing Machines
*A pattern from Chelsea C Designs
*A Sophie swimsuit pattern from Closet Case Patterns
*1 yard of in-stock fabric from Crookshanks Custom Textiles (winner splits shipping costs)
*A $25 Store voucher & Discount code from Fabric Please (CANADACUPS for 20% off storewide during your tour)
*A pattern from Favorite Things
*A discount code from Libelle Sewing
*A bralette kit from Braphoria
*A pattern from Ohhh Lulu Sews
*A pattern from Lingerie Secrets Patterns by Jan Bones
*A discount code from Funky Monkey -code: CC10 for 10% off store wide for the length of the tour. active until the 22nd 😊 Not valid on already discounted full bolts.


Sunday, October 8, 2017

"Fall"ing for Christmas--Reversible Mug rug


This is a reversible mugrug/placemat pattern.  One side is a pumpkin, the other side is an ornament.  There are several variations you can make with this pattern.  


You can leave the fabric all the same, or use up some scraps and make it colorful.

Both sides are identical, so be careful when cutting them out, the more precise you are, the better it will look, and your quilting will look much better.  The seam allowance is a scant ¼, but just make sure to make them all the same.



To start press and possibly starch each piece of fabric. Carefully cut out each piece and lay it out on your fabric.    I like to lay my fabric right sides together, and cut out 2 at a time, this goes faster and keeps my pieces lined up better.  This might not work if your fabric is directional, or you want to fussy cut. 

 



 


 A trick I like to use is to line up the second piece along the cut of the first.  This way I don't have to cut again, and you know the curve will be a perfect match. 






Now that you have them all cut out you're ready to sew them together.  








Most of these seams we’ll be sewing are curves, and can be a bit scary at first.  I find it’s WAY easier not to pin, but to do the hand over hand method.  By this I mean you line up the top of your seam and make a few stitches, then you hold the bottom fabric in your right hand, and the top fabric in your left.  Just cross over your hands and line the fabric up along your presser foot and sew slowly.  It works beautifully, I learned this method from sewing bra’s but it’s carried over into all aspects of my sewing.  I’ll show some pictures, and hopefully a video of this method. 



To line up curves you don't want to line up at the edges or points, but at the seam line!!!  As you can see here you'll have a wee triangle sticking out on the end.



 Then you want to go slowly.  Line the pieces up along the presser foot as you go. 










 If you're a bit confused, just lay them out as they would go, and then flip the top part over. 









If it makes it easier for the first few you can mark your seam lines with pins.










Then flip it over and match them up.  Put another pin across them to hold it all in place.




 Place your needle right where they meet.  Pull your threads to the back and hold them for your first few stitches, this way it won't get caught in your plate.  Now you just go slow and using both hands holding top and bottom separately you line them up at your mark and sew, adjusting your hands as you go and manipulating the fabric to lay on the line.   Starting with the middle piece and work out to the side.   





Then sew the middle ones together, and press everything.  It's easier to get your curves to press if you snip along the way a bit or use pinking sheers to trim your seam allowance.  Next add your 'stem' piece at the top.  You can fold it in half to get a crease and then line that up with the center seam.


Then you'll attach batting to the back of one side of your mugrug.  You can use your choice of batting here, doesn’t really matter as long as it’s attached.  You can use iron on, or just use a glue stick to hold it in place. 


Then sew your mugrug right sides together, leaving a 2” opening along one side.  I recommend pinning your seams top and bottom as well as in the middle, try and get them lined up nicely, this way your quilting will line up on both sides.


 
Almost done!!! Just press and turn in your opening close that off with a nice top stitch around the edges.  Now quilt it however you see fit.     





On the left side I top stitched down each side of the seam, on the right hand side I just did a random squiggly quilt line.  Feel free to try your own pattern.  




Friday, October 6, 2017

Pajama pattern review--Skyler & Jordan (Pollywoggles Patterns)




Just in time for fall, comes a brand new Pajama Pattern from one of my favorite pattern designers Pollywoggles Patterns.  This is the Skyler & Jordan Pajama Set.  It's great for boys and girls, summer, winter, spring and fall!!!!





This latest pattern uses cotton woven, and knit ribbing.  This was great because I always have a ton of quilting cotton laying around, and it's nice to find a pattern that uses them.  My daughter and pug love them.  Go join her Facebook group for a discount code.  Pollywoggles Patterns Facebook Group,  She's also doing a sew along starting on Tuesday, so don't miss that!!!









The pattern is very easy to follow, she does a great job explaining each step.  The construction is simple and makes sense.  There are step by step instructions with photos, and a sew along on her FB page. 











 She even shows you how to grade between sizes if you need to do that.  My daughter is a size 8 in height, and a 6 in width.  It's great how she shows you how to grade for that on the curves.  I'm very pleased with the fit, and my daughter loves them!!!!








I love the cuffs on the sleeves and legs, this way you can make them a bit longer to last more then just once season.   My daughter prefers short sleeves, so I went with that option.  This pattern also comes as shorts for summertime. 







They're very comfy and you can use some pretty fun fabrics.  I can't wait to make some flannel ones for Christmas!!!!!!  










To see some more pictures check these blogs.  There are a lot of options, you can make them warm and cozy with flannel, or light and summering for those hot summer nights.  The choice is up to you. 


Sykler and Jordan Simply Comfortable--Pollywoggles Blog

PJ Test - Momma Bear Sews blog