Today is my day on the Summer of Soleil blog tour and I couldn’t be more excited! My friend Lauren of Baste and Gather and Selvage Designs has come up with the perfect pattern for summer! This is a knit dress with cut out back option perfect for those hot and active summer days of playing in the sun. This dress can be made as a simple play dress or can be dressed up a bit to make it a little more fancier. I decided to play around with the pattern just a tad since I knew I would be making a ton of Soleil’s just the way it was designed for all those play days in summer we are about to have.
As you can see I decided to do a little color blocking with this dress. I also added a little loop to the top of the back cutout just for a little added detail. There is also a closed back option for this dress too in case you want more coverage.
I also added some rows of pin tucks at the bottom of the skirt. I have never done pin tucks with a knit fabric before so I was a little hesitant but they ended up turning out perfectly thanks to my pin tuck foot! Why have I never bought one before?? It made pin tucks so easy and fast!! This dress is definitely twirl worthy too according to my 3 year old.
The last little medication I made was add a collar to the front. The collar is made out of a woven so to be sure that I would still be able to fit the dress over my daughter’s head I did make the back neck opening a little lower to make up for not having any stretch in the front now. It worked perfectly. I love the little added collar!
If you haven’t already purchased your Soleil pattern I highly recommend it. It is beautifully written with clear instructions and beautiful detailed illustrations to guide you along the way. The fit was spot on for my girls and I couldn’t be happier! It’s the perfect dress to make your own as well by doing simple medications like I did. It’s just an all around great pattern.
If you would like to win a copy of your own Lauren has been nice enough to give one away! Just simply enter the rafflecopter below for your chance to win!
Today I am bringing home a tutorial I contributed for the blog Me Sew Crazy as part of the Sewing Rabbit team. It is a super simple but super cute chiffon back top I made for my daughter. It’s the perfect mix of casual and trendy. If you haven’t sewn with chiffon before, this is the perfect beginner project to give it a try. I actually have plans to make a few more this week!
- Well fitting t-shirt for a template
- chiffon fabric
- french terry fabric (or any knit fabric)
- rolled hem foot (optional)
- serger (optional)
- Before we get started here are a couple of posts that share some awesome tips for working with chiffon. See this post by See Kate Sew and this post on Craftsy.
- Take your shirt you are using as a template and lay it on your fabric like pictured above. Cut around the shirt remembering to include your seam allowance. I wanted my shirt to have long sleeves so I drew lines extending from the neck and armpit to show how I cut my shirt. I also wanted my shirt to have a slight high-lo so I curved my hemline as well. See photo below.
- Use the shirt front you just cut out as a template to make a back for your shirt. Cut the back so that it curves upwards towards the neck and starts and ends right under the armpit like shown above.
- You should now have a front and back that look like the photos above. Make sure your neck opening will be big enough to fit over your child’s head.
- Now you will want to cut the chiffon fabric for the back of the shirt. Use the front and back pieces you just cut out of your knit fabric as a guide for how you will cut your chiffon. You will want to cut the top of the chiffon piece at a curve to match the curve of the top of the back so that it will curve slight upwards towards the neckline. You will wan to cut the bottom of the chiffon to be a little long than the front of the shirt on the sides to allow for hemming. You also want to cut the back at a curve so the hemline will complete the high-lo look we are going for. And finally you want to cut the overall width to be about 2 inches wider than the front of the shirt to allow for small gathers in the next step.
- Now we want to hem the chiffon. You can use a rolled hem foot for this step or use a serger like how I did.
- If you are using a serger simply serge the bottom hem of the chiffon. Make sure you turn your cutting blades off. Then fold the chiffon up once and then again and pin and then sew. I like this way best because it helps me get an even hem all the way across especially when the hem is curved.
- Now you will want to find the middle of the top part of the chiffon and pin it so that there is about 6 inches in the middle for gathering. To gather just set your machine to the longest length stitch and bast stitch along the top. Do not back stitch at the ends. Then pull the threads on either end to make your gathers. You will want to make your gathers so that it lines up perfectly with the width of the knit part of the back of your shirt like pictured above.
- Now you want to pin your both pieces with right sides together and sew all the way across. Finish your seams as desired.
- Now take your front and back pieces and pin all the way around the shirt. You will want to sew all the way around using a stretch stitch or “lightening bolt” stitch like on my machine. Finish your seams as desired.
- Turn your shirt right side out and enjoy!! I chose not to hem my french terry knit because I like the look of the raw rolled edges and because it is knit it won’t fray. If you don’t like that look you can always hem it.
I absolutely love this shirt and ended up making one for myself! Sorry for the cell phone selfie! I never took proper photos of this top.
Chiffon fabrics come in so many cool prints so it’s a shirt you can have a lot of fun mixing and matching prints with. Here are a few pictures of my daughter wearing her new shirt!
I hope you enjoy this simple tutorial and would love to see what you create! Happy sewing!!
Today I have the privilege of sharing with you some items I have made from the Glamping collection by Willow and Co! This collection is SO wonderful!! I had such a hard time picking out the patterns I wanted to sew for this tour. I have plans and ideas to make every single pattern in this collection. If you haven’t seen it yet head on over to their website HERE and make sure you take a look at the lookbook for some amazing inspiration! I had some high hopes to make my son a coordinating outfit as well but time and weather was just not on my side.
For my daughter Layla I decided to make her the Clover shorts by Mouse House Creations and the Fawn Lily Tunic by Rock the Stitch. I used a lightweight stretch denim for the shorts and added a little ruffle trim at the cuff. For the tunic I used a chiffon for the skirt portion and a cotton lawn with a stretchy mesh/lace type overlay. I wanted the top to be flowy so the chiffon worked out perfectly. I love the way both pieces came together and sewing each item was such a breeze. Both had very clear instructions and lots of pictures to go with them.
For my daughter Kira I wanted to make the Ash Jumpsuit by Petit A Petit And family. The second I saw this pattern I knew I wanted to make it in a floral fabric but didn’t have any in a woven like the pattern calls for. I couldn’t stop thinking about this knit floral I had from Girl Charlee so I just decided to go ahead and give the pattern a try in a knit and it came together beautifully. I absolutely love it in knit. I did make it one size smaller than I would have if it were in a woven and I also tapered the legs at the ankles a little for a different look for this one. I wanted the jumpsuit to have a little bit of a cropped ankle feel. I also changed the neckline to make things a little easier to sew since the knit is pretty thin. I simply chopped off the neck at the top and then added the braided straps for ties. I am in love with this pattern and all the options that are included with it. I have many more ideas I would like to try with this pattern too! The instructions are clear and easy to understand and the illustrations that go along with them are perfect.
The photo shoot for this post did not go as smoothly as I had hoped as you can tell by the picture above! I had plans of making two Aster Cardigans by LBG Studio to go along with their outfits but this crazy Utah weather decided it had different plans for me. I had to hurry and gather the kids as soon as they woke up from their nap and take pictures in the windy and cold weather before we got all wet and it started to rain. I did finish one of my cardigans though after I took these photos. You can see it in the very first photo of this post. I made it with a cream colored knit and used a cream lace as an overlay. I skipped the collar on this one just because I didn’t want it to be too bulky from the two layers I already used for the sweater. I love the way it turned out though! The other cardigan I will be making is a mint and cream striped knit with a cream collar. I think it will coordinate perfectly with these outfits.
Luckily our photo shoot turned around and the girls found their first pet…a roly poly!! They named him “Froggie” and would not let go of him the rest of the night!
As you can see my girls love their new roly poly! I just love this age and watching them explore and discover new things around them. I also love these outfits because they are perfect for play and still fun and stylish at the same time!
Be sure you check out all of the other bloggers on the tour for more inspiration and ways you can create different looks from this collection. I am amazed at the talent of all of these designers and bloggers. I am so impressed with this collection. You definitely need to check it out!
There is also a giveaway for a free pattern and fabric used from the lookbook over at the Willow and Co blog so be sure to enter!
Hooray!! It’s my turn to share what I have made for the Calling All Kids series that Alida Makes is hosting. This is such a fun series and I am so excited to be able to participate this year.
Calling All Kids is a series that explores children’s clothing as it relates to gender. We were challenged to create a piece of clothing that is either unisex or that does not go along with traditional gendered clothing. It’s basically a series all about creating clothing that suits your child’s personality without any stereotypes getting in the way. At first I wasn’t sure what I would make because my girls are pretty girly. I have always said though that they are the daintiest and girliest little tomboys I know. They love to take care of their baby dolls and play dress up and they love pink and sparkly things yet they love to be outside playing in the dirt and are constantly begging to play with their big brother and his friends. So for this series I decided I wanted to make my version of a tuxedo dress. I feel like it describes my girly tomboys pretty well.
For the first dress I made I started off with the Ruffle Top pattern by Elegance and Elephants. I changed things up a bit by adding the white panel in the front to represent a tuxedo shirt. I added pin tucks and buttons and a “bow tie” to complete the look. I decided to make it in a floral print because not too long ago my little Kira asked me to make her a new dress with flowers on it. I love that this dress is super girly with the floral print and cute subtle ruffles at the sleeves yet has the tuxedo inspired look to it to balance it out. I think it definitely suits Kira’s personality.
For my next dress I decided to remix my own design I collaborated on with Figgy’s patterns. This is the Eos dress with an added white panel above the low back neckline. I thought it was a perfect pattern to remix to make a tuxedo inspired look. I also love that the tuxedo look is in the back instead of the front as some might expect. It also makes the dress a little different from her sisters and still coordinate at the same time. I like having my girls coordinate without being too matchy matchy. I also took out the pin tucks in the front and added one little pleat instead since I already had pin tucks in the back for the tuxedo shirt. You can see I also made it sleeveless. I’m really happy with this dress and I think the color looks great on my little Layla.
I kind of love the way these dresses turned out and I love that my daughters are super girly yet super active and messy. They always keep me on my toes and I just love watching their little personalities blossom. It’s definitely my favorite part of being a parent!
Here are some more photos of my girls rocking their new tuxedo inspired dresses:
Make sure you stop by all the other bloggers participating in this series to find some inspiration for your own Calling All Kids outfits. There have been some pretty awesome creations already! There is also an amazing giveaway that you MUST enter! You can find all the details and enter to win HERE.
Floral tuxedo dress – modified Ruffle Top by Elegance and Elephants, fabric from LA fabric district
Teal booties – Joyfolie
Blue tuxedo dress – modified Eos dress by Figgy’s, fabric from Joann
Gold sparkle shoes – Old Navy
This is a tutorial I shared for for the Me Sew Crazy blog and now I am sharing it here. It is a tutorial on how I color blocked and added length to an old sweater that was just too short on my son. This can be done for t-shirts as well since hopefully we are heading into spring and leaving the colder months behind us! It is amazing to me how fast my son grows! I feel like I am constantly bagging up old clothes that are too small to donate to Good Will. It’s such a shame sometimes because while my son grows taller so quickly he doesn’t necessarily grow wider at the same rate. So all of these clothes I am tossing out still fit him in width but just not in length. I decided after this last closet clean up I would save some of his sweaters and shirts and see if I can salvage them. Here is what I did to add length and some fun color blocking:
Materials and Supplies:
- old sweater
- knit fabric for color blocking
- seam ripper
- coordinating thread
- Take your old sweater and grab your seam ripper and start ripping away! Take off the arms and neck band. Cut your sleeves and sweater front and back where you want your color blocking to be. Be sure to remember to add your seam allowance before cutting.
- Use the pieces you just cut as patterns to cut out your new pieces with your fabric you are using for the color blocking. To add length to my sleeves I added a white band. If you don’t want the added band in the middle of the sleeve you could just add length to the top blue piece. To add length to the front and back of the sweater I just cut my new pattern piece about 4 inches longer than the original sweater. Be sure to add your seam allowances to your new fabric pieces.
- With right sides together, sew your new bottom half of your sweater to the top original half of your sweater. Repeat for the back of the sweater.
- With right sides together sew the sides of the front and back of your sweater.
- With right sides together sew the top half of the sleeve to the middle band (or bottom half of original sweater if you are not doing the middle band). Then take the bottom half of the original sweater and sew to the middle band, right sides together. By using the bottom half of the original sweater we don’t have to worry about making cuffs for the sleeves or hemming them
- With right sides together take your pin and sew your new sleeve to your sweater. Repeat with the other sleeve.
- Reattach your original neck band or make a new one by using the original neck band as a pattern.
Hem the bottom of your sweater and then you are DONE! Enjoy your new sweater!!
Here are some photos of my son rocking his new sweater. He loves it!
I hope this tutorial gives you some inspiration to think twice about tossing those old sweaters/shirts! As always, if you make anything from my tutorials I would love to see!