Saturday, November 1, 2014

Halloween 2014

So like I said before my little man wanted to be a modern day robin hood. I know I already have shown you how to make his rocking boot covers. For the main part of his costume I have made another Zander's hoodie.

I love the Zander pattern from Everything Your Mama Made. I have made him one before that I loved in the vest version and I knew it could be awesome as a modern day robin hood.

I used a pre-quilted suede for the lining of the jacket and the sleeves and a green houndstooth suiting material for the outer fabric. They both came from JoAnn Fabrics and were pretty reasonably priced.

I decided that if I was making him a costume again it would have to be wearable after Halloween and the Zander definitely fit the bill and all the pattern pieces were already cut out from the last one so it was a breeze to sew up this version.

For the required Robin Hood accessories--I bought a toy bow and arrow set from the Toys R Us and spray painted it brown. Also used some leftover scraps from the boot covers to wrap around the handle of the bow. To make the quiver more realistic I sewed up a straight pocket to slip over the plastic one (see the original red peeking out?) attaching the strap to the top and bottom of the side seam.

Also not shown a small pouch made with the quilted suede and a leather lace draw string for keeping Robin Hood's money in. However, son like mother he spends it(meaning-lost it) faster than a blink of an eye. HaHaHaa!

Sunday, October 12, 2014

New and Improved Boot Cover Tutorial

As promised I am back today
 to show you the new boot covers!

Supplies needed: 
Faux leather, eyelet grommets,
 eyelet tool and small hammer, leather lacing.

To make these boot covers for yourself you will need to take a few measurements.

You will need your measurements WEARING  the shoes you intend to cover.

You will need the height, from ankle to just below the knee.

The circumference of the leg just below the knee as well as at the ankle over the shoe.

Add 1 inch to all measurements and then cut in half the
 knee and ankle measurements so that you can cut the cover out on the fold.

Then you must decide how long you want the cuff to come down.
Add your inch to that measurement as well. 

The top of the cuff pattern piece should be identical to the top/knee
measurement. For the bottom of the cuff add an inch or two depending 
on how dramatic you want it to be.

Your two pattern pieces should look similar to the image at the right.

Cut your faux leather cutting the fabric on the fold. I have used some clearanced black upholstery fabric with a soft white backing.

Make small notches a couple of inches up from the bottom.
Fold over the raw edge above the notch and stitch.
Then hem the shortest and the longest side of the cuff.

 Then you must stitch the cuff onto the top of the boot cover. 
Next with right sides together, stitch un-hemmed ankle tabs.

For the next steps you will need 

Follow the instructions on the eyelet tool and put the eyelets on the back 
of the covers taking care to evenly space them. 
Use the leather cord and lace up the back of the boot. 

Voila! You are done!

Is this not exactly what you had in mind?

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Who's ready for Halloween??

I know I am not done yet!

This year my son has decided that he would like to be Robin Hood. I think really he just wanted to carry bow and arrows of course.

 I decided to go with Russel Crow's more modern and rugged Robin Hood
 rather than the cartoon fox version of Robin Hood. 

It would have been easier to make the cartoon version with some green felt. 
However, my little guy would not have something functional to wear later.

I have the Robin Hood jacket done and the boot covers. 
I'll be sharing the new an improved faux leather boot cover tutorial tomorrow. 
until then you can check out my previous felt vesion version HERE

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Bundle Up Boy Tour

I have been keeping a secret.

A BIG secret.

I'm on the Bundle Up Boys blog tour for 
Pattern Revolution!

I was so excited when I got that Email that my coworkers thought that I had won the lottery or something ((the sewing lottery of course ha!)) I was that excited. I saw some snippets of what the bundle was going to be all about this time around on the Pattern Revolution Facebook page and knew that I was going to buy WHATEVER the bundle could offer me. Anyone who sews for boys can tell you it can be so hard to sew for boys sometimes when the patterns all seam basically the same. I know that Pattern Revolution has some awesome designers and whatever they could come up with for this bundle would be new, fabulous, awesome and cool.

For the tour we got to pick which patterns we wanted to sew! It was a tough decision but I knew that I was on a time crunch because of a planned vacation to the beach the weekend following the notification. That wasn't going to stop me;l I had to say YES!!!! I looked at the patterns that they were offering (and they are ALL cool) and figured out how much time I had to spare and what could be sewn up in my time frame. I opted to go for the Fishsticks Honor Roll Henley and EYYM's Zander hoodie.

I picked to sew up the awesome Honor Roll Raglan Henley by Fishsticks Designs first. I love this pattern, you can do color blocking, mixing patterns, use 3 different fabrics on the front if you wanted. It is a great way to use up that small square of that favorite knit for the front bottom of the henley. This pattern also includes a short sleeve as well!

I made this top for my Nephew who is 5 and I sewed up a size 6 in the long sleeved version. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to get pictures of him in his new henley but luckily for me my 5 year old nephew and 4 year old son wear the exact same size!

For this top I used some woodland animal knit fabric from JoAnn's I had left over from last year. I hear that they have this knit back in though for this fall. It is paired with some blue knit that I got at a second hand sale for the Salvation Army. I got quite a few yards of it for just a couple of dollars!

The tip that Fishsticks gives about starch spraying your knits before sewing will seriously change your life. Why have I never done this before???

My little man is also wearing the Nowhere man pants that I blogged about here.

For my next pattern I decided to do the EYYM (Everything Your Mama Made) Zander Hoodie and Vest.

I love, love, love this pattern and so does my son. He has worn it half a dozen times already and always gets compliments on it!  The lovely Kymy came up with a pattern that is a modern take on the classic zip hoodie featuring asymmetrical zipper and front pockets. It is fully lined pattern which will keep my little guy snug as a bug. I am already planning on a second Zander but with long sleeves; on the hunt now for some thrifted sweatshirt fleece like Olga from olga-kidapproved used! You MUST see her version, so cute!!

For my Zander vest I opted to use a fleece from JoAnns (of course) and another Salvation Army knit fabric find. I cut the pattern out all kinds of crazy to put the pattern of the fleece on the same angle as the zipper but I figured with the fleece, being off grain would not make much difference.

Kymy has also thoughtfully included detailed instructions to her pattern that shows up close how to stitch the lining/shell/band. If you have never stitched a fully lined jacket you just need to follow the instructions/images. Just know that it might look crazy in the middle but it WILL WORK! AND it will be amazeballs.

I sincerely hope that you will check out everyone else's amazing work. Some fantastic sewist's got in on this tour and put out some great pieces that I know you will fall in love with!

If you would like to buy these great patterns from the Pattern Revolution Bundle Up or check out the  other patterns ((which I am SO buying)) go to the Pattern Revolution Bundle Up sale site.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

A Lovely Sunny Dress (Review)

Another designer I recently was 
given the opportunity to test for was Veronica of SewVery..

 The woman behind SewVery patterns and the SewVery Blog. 
She is just so sweet and a talented sewist. 
You should really check out her recent finish of  Radiant home studio's retro rucksack. I love the colors Veronica used! 
I actually won this pattern a while back and it is still hanging out it my to-do pile:) 

Any-who back to the Sunny Dress and Top pattern review.
This pattern includes a cute tie back and two neck options and two lengths.
 One neck option is your basic rounded neckline and the other includes a ruffled neck. 
Your two lengths available in this pattern is a regular top and a dress length. 

For my first run testing of this pattern I sewed up the size 8 for my Niece using view B (no ruffle) in a dress. The dress sewed up so very quick and you could easily sew up 3 or 4 assembly style for school in an afternoon. 

 This dress fits her perfectly; both in size and style. I used some Mr Men fabric from my stash.
 I had justenough fabric for this top and sadly have no more.

My Niece loved this so much I knew I had to sew her up another one. In true me fashion I used another irreplaceable fabric. I got this fabric in an estate sale recently and I just love it so much. I decided that I should stop hoarding these types of fabrics and just make something that can be loved or worn.

On this version I opted to lengthen the top to a tunic length (I went down to the length of a size 5 dress to make a size 8 tunic). I also used some estate sale fabric for the yellow mini polka dot bib and scraps to make a turned tube a ruffle down the center of the bib. Then accented  that with some white rick-rack
 I had laying around and a few buttons.
I really hope to see this on her in the fall with some skinny's, boots and a long sleeved shirt under it!

On adorb overload yet??
If you want to get your own copy of the Sunny Dress/top pattern you should go to the
 SewVery Pattern shop . And I mean like, right now because until
 tomorrow (August 17th) the pattern is 20% off!!

If you would like to try your luck Veronica is graciously giving away 2 copies of the pattern
(also ending tomorrow) I've included the rafflecopter for you.

There are many talented sewists participating in the blog tour and you should totally
 check out all the awesomeness they have cooked up.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Nowhere Man Pant Pattern Review

Let me just start out saying how FABULOUS this pattern is.

It's fabulous.

It is a straight forward classic pant pattern that sews up in a jif. Cute pockets and the tab detail at the waistband I think it is just adorable!

Pattern Description: 
The Pants have a relaxed fit, two front pockets and two back pockets and optional button tab belt loops. They feature a flat front and elastic fit back to easily customize the fit for your little guy. The pattern also includes the option for adding a 5th pocket, faux fly or back yoke option, for lots of customization. 
(taken straight from Shwin Designs pattern description)

Pattern Sizing:
12m-10 years

Were the instructions easy to follow?
Very easy. There was nothing that was tricky I thought. I think anyone could tackle this pant pattern. 

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
I like that it gives you the instructions for a faux fly option but you don't have to use it, I opted to leave his flat front.

Fabric Used:
Dove Grey 21 wale corduroy. Isn't there just something about sewing corduroy that screams "Back-To-School" and Fall?

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:
I did not alter these at all, usually I add length for my tall boy but on these I just single folded the hem and it was perfect. 

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?
I actually already did sew these again. I made my nephew and son the exact same pair at the same time. It is great when the kids fit in the same size so I can just whiz through two 
pairs at once!
I think that if I sewed them again I would add a little length to the elastic back. Even though my boy is skinny but I feel like it was too snug/bunchy on him. 

If you think you need this pattern in your life you can buy them HERE at Shwin Designs.

**Let the record show; this was not a sponsored post**

I purchased the pattern on my own and actually had meant to sew them the season before last? of Kids Clothes Week, see my blogpost here. Funny thing, now that I look at my plans, I still need to make the kid some pj pants too!!

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Layer Cake Sampler QAL Progress and a WINNER!

I finally put my mind to finishing my blocks for the Layer Cake Sampler QAL this past week.
They have been staring at me from the corner of the sewing room. I had left off back in
 ((SHHH! ((march))!!)

Yea, I know. . . such a slacker. 

The worst part was that I had left off at the half way point (here) Week 6 and I already had the majority of my half square triangles already cut and ready to piece. 

This morning I decided to retake all the original blocks pictures I had done as well as the remaining blocks.
 I think it was worth getting up before 7 am on a Saturday to get them taken before my
 4 year old woke and would like to "help."

I think part of the road block for me is that I fell out of love with my fabric choices. 
Sad, but true. I love them on their own though!

I tried to use colors that I wouldn't normally pick or put together 
and sometimes it just doesn't vibe for you in the end.

Now I just need to get my sashing strips and quilt it up. This quilt is going to be massive though. 
The blocks alone are 16" finished, once the sashing is added in there it's suppose
 to end up being something like 80"x 98". 

If you want to do your own sampler quilt using HST;
 Material Girls is responsible for leading the way on the QAL here.

I know really y'all just want to know who the wishes giveaway winner is....

Drum Roll Please......

Congratulations Janie!
Now go check your email:)

Sunday, July 27, 2014

My Blogiversary and a Giveaway

Can't believe it's that time again!
I have been blogging for a ((little)) while now and it doesn't really feel like it has been that long.

Looking back through some of my posts I can see how much I've grown as a blogger.
Not really my typing/wording but how much my photographs and sewing has come along.
Let's be real here; I'm not winning a Pulitzer anytime soon.

I thought I would share a few of my favorite and most viewed pages before getting to the giveaway.

Most Viewed

Followed a close second by my tutorial on
how to make this bag

(see those awful photo's I was talking about??)

My favorite things on the blog that I sewed

The whole musketeer ensemble
for Halloween that year.

Something I sewed (and loved) but he only
wore one other time

Now that we've completed our walk down memory lane...


I am giving away 2 Wishes by Moda charm packs
and 3 spools of my favorite Gutermann threads
in color 20,22 and 102

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, July 20, 2014

The Janey Jump Around Dress

The Janey Jump Around

A couple of months ago I sewed up the Janey Jump Around dress by Peek A Boo Pattern shop but just got around to getting pictures done.

It is a FREE pattern so go to the peek-a-boo pattern shop and download it today!
It is so nice when the pattern designers offer a pattern for free. I know how much goes into designing and testing each pattern. I believe that the drafting takes a long time too even though I never have done it myself. 

I made this for my Niece using some red tag knit from JoAnn's and the solid came from there too.
The cute little blue buttons came from my stash.
 I just can't help myself; anytime there is a cute girl's print in knit the red tag section I have to buy a few yards. 

Ok, well ... 

truth time here...

If there is ever ANY cute knit print in red tag I buy it. I have a ridiculous stash of knits 
and I just can't help myself. 

Ready for another truth?
There's 5 more lengths of different knits that are not pictured here...
and that does not include performance or swim knits.

Anyhow, lets ahem, move on and keep this our ((little)) secret and get back 
to the Janey jump around.

I opted to do this Janey Jump around in a size 10.

I did contrasting short sleeve band and lengthened them a little so it would be appropriate for the fall with legging and boots too.

Who's with me on getting some sewing done for
back to school??

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Cartwheel Collection by Love Notions

I have been very fortunate recently to be picked to test some patterns. I can't tell y'all how much it means to me to be selected. I think that it speaks volumes to how much my sewing skills have come along since I started sewing. I know that I still have much to learn and I am grateful to have these opportunities.

Well now that I have gotten the mushy stuff out of the way...

My next pattern test is the cartwheel collection by

The lovely Tami of Love Notions has a new pattern in the works for a collection called the Cartwheel collection. It is appropriately named because the girlies can do all the cartwheels they want and remain modest with the attached bike shorts on the skirt (if you pick to sew that version). This is a a great collection because you have so many options. You can have a dress, shorts, tee shirt or a single or double skirt either without or with shorts attached.

I made the collection for my eldest niece. I think that it will be great for back-to-school which is quickly approaching. I used a purple and pink hounds tooth from Jo-Ann's as well as a solid lighter purple.

I was picked to do the tee-shirt
 (don't you just LOVE the cut out back?))
and the double skirt with attached bike short.

I have the perfect fabrics to do another one
for another niece, next time I'm making the dress though.

Here is a link to the Love Notions Etsy page.
The word is the first 100 purchasers can use the code
     for 15% off their purchase of the cartwheel collection!

Shared on

Friday, July 4, 2014

The Run Hop Skip Jump Shorts/Pants Pattern Review

  • Hey! As my followers already know, my name is Susan and I blog from just outside Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. I almost always sew for my little man but occasionally throw in a quilt, gifts or something for myself.

I recently saw in blog land that Stitch it Now was looking for pattern testers for a new pattern for shorts and pants. I knew that I had to get right on that! As I mentioned before, I almost always sew for my little man and there are just not that many patterns out there for boys ((although this one definitely works for girls)) so I had to put my name in quick! Luckily, I was picked and the rest as they say is history.

This pattern has patch pockets on the front and back which give an excellent opportunity for using a different fabric for interest. The pattern also comes in two lengths, shorts and pants, which is great for transitioning a pattern from summer to winter. I also could totally see myself doing a cropped pant (capri for girls) with the tabs on the side for fall/spring too! This pattern also includes a flat front with elastic in the back.

For my version I picked white and red bottom weight. I used the white as the base and wonder under-ed the red stripes to it, edge stitching each strip. I did not fold under and stitch, I opted instead to them raw so the would fuzz up a little after washing. For the patch pockets I used regular denim and grabbed a Clorox pen to draw on the stars. 

Lesson learned after above picture-put on the bleach gel thicker the first time, I had to do two applications because some were not visible.

I think the sizing was pretty spot on...or my guy was spot on her size chart! He is placed firmly in the size 5 which is what I made for him and it fit like it was made for him ((ha ha ha)). No modifications for the actual sizing were necessary; It is so nice when a pattern fits with no mods.

I think the shorts turned out great and I will surely be making again. I have plenty of bottom weights in my stash and think pants in kelly green will be made. It was 88 degrees out today so the pants are in the future! These were a easy sew and can definitely become a staple pattern. That being said I think that there are some things I would do differently. I LOVE the stripes but it made for a very thick faux fly. I would also always add the button/faux button hole on the waistband because it makes it look like real pants--not pull up pants. After a certain age I don't prefer the look of pull up pants but I still love the ease for them dressing and going potty. See the bottom of this post for my how-to on the faux button hole on the waistband.

Overall, I like the pattern and will be doing them again. The printing was easy although I would highly recommend printing in color for the pattern portion. It can get a little jumbled in black and white even with the very helpful different prints. I hate to print in color because I like to preserve the expensive ink but trust me; go for color!

So, Make sure you take the time to go to Stitch it Now and find out how to purchase your own pair of Run Jump Hop Skip Shorts/Pants. While you are there make sure you enter the giveaway! There's a chanceto win your own copy of the pattern, a fabric gift card or your choice of wither boy or girl inspired Japanese Echino fabrics!!

**Although the actual tour has been cancelled, Stitch it now is still having the giveaway. **

 photo 92050c1f-07eb-4b59-92b7-d2175f6055ed_zpsa8b03590.jpg


  • Faux Button Hole Tutorial

  • I marked on the waist band where I wanted it and folded over the faux fly so it was not as thick. Then you just use your button hole attachment and put it in but dont cut open the button hole. Then I stitched on a button over the faux button hole and all the layers of the waistband.

  • So starting off with my faker waistband after stitching the faux fly. Press your waistband down and mark where you want your button hole.
  • Then you select your button hole style, I always suggest testing it out on a scrap of fabric first.

Then you put the faux fly open, notice the pressed lines to the left of the needle in the picture above.

After that you can stitch down your waist band like normal.

Then you can stitch on button! 
Yay your done!!!!

 *** I was given this pattern for free in exchange for testing, but all opinions are my own. ***