October 12, 2014

Fall 2014 Collection: Meet Rhiannon!

regular hem, plain sleeve finish
Art Gallery Winged cotton voile featured

The last design in the fall collection is the Rhiannon shirt. Yes, I named this after the famous Fleetwood Mac song! This shirt is SO EASY to make! With only three main pattern pieces and a folded front facing, it stitches up so fast you will need more than one. Inspired by an expensive shirt that I saw in a catalog, I immediately thought to myself, "There's nothing to this design! I can get that whipped up in no time!" So that's what I did.

It has raglan sleeves, a very relaxed neckline that you customize to fit you, options for the length, and a simple elastic casing at the sleeve. You can opt to embroider the neckline as I have shown in one of the variations. I did not include any embroidery designs with the pattern as I made up what I did based on the contrasting fabric that is sewn to the bottom of the shirt. You could easily do the same or even use some machine embroidery on the design to make it fast and easy.

I like the look of the shirt either tucked in or belted, but feel free to wear it however you like. I think it is great with leggings as a tunic or with a cute pair of jeans. Let your imagination run wild!

Recommended fabrics for this design are: cotton lawn or voile, rayon, lightweight eyelet, or silk. I do not recommend regular quilting cotton for this design as it needs more drape. If you find a really silky cotton (like what Art Gallery offers), then it would probably work well.

The stock for this pattern will be here NEXT WEEK (week of Oct. 13), so we'll be busy getting the new designs listed on the website for your ordering convenience.

Here are the variations for the shirt along with fabric information.

Regular hem with ruffle added to lower edge, regular sleeve finish
Art Gallery Emmy Grace by Bari J. cotton voile featured
shirttail variation with tiny ruffled edge, regular sleeve finish
Liberty of London cotton lawn fabric featured
regular length with wide lace trim added, regular sleeve finish
lightweight eyelet fabric featured
regular length, folded ruffle option on sleeve
Westminster Amy Butler's Alchemy rayon fabric featured
regular length with contrasting ruffle added, regular sleeve finish, with hand embroidery embellishment at the neckline
Westminster solid cotton voile with Art Gallery Indelible cotton voile contrast
Happy Sewing!

October 11, 2014

Fall 2014 Collection: Meet Dakota!

knee length, folded collar, back button tab, with silk embroidery embellishment
charcoal Matka silk (available from www.bblackandsons.com)

The second design for the fall collection is the Dakota Duster. This is an unlined jacket that stitches up quickly. Design features include princess seaming, set in sleeves, and the option of making it fingertip or knee length. The princess seaming is flattering and at the same time really lends a flowing quality to this jacket that I love and the weight of it is perfect for cool days when a couple of layers are excellent.

I gave you a couple of options for the neckline. You can choose a small folded collar or a Mandarin collar that stands up nicely. There are also options to add in-seam pockets to the side fronts as well as button tabs, scalloped back yoke, and layered ruffles to the center back. You also have the option to add contrasting fabric to accent different parts of the jacket, an option to add ruffles to the sleeves, and a sweet ruffled flower for the front.

The construction is very straightforward and you'll be glad to know that the facing is incorporated into the center front so that it is folded around to the wrong side. That means no separate facing to worry about! I think it leaves a more professional finish and is quicker to stitch as well. I chose to serge the seams and press them open throughout the instructions. This is great for smooth seams and optional topstitching, as was completed for the faux suede jacket.

The recommendations for fabric are many! I would highly recommend Matka silk, linen, faux suede, twill, velveteen, corduroy, lightweight wool, and denim to name a few. Simply the choice of fabric with your personal preference on design details guarantees that you'll have a one of a kind jacket that suits your style. Don't forget to raid the vintage button box! This jacket is a perfect place to flaunt a set of beautiful buttons!

Here are the details regarding the samples you will see in the pattern along with the fabric information (as I have it).

We are expecting the stock to be in NEXT WEEK, (week of Oct. 13), so we'll be busy getting the new designs listed to the website for your ordering convenience.

knee length, folded collar, front in-seam pockets, back yoke and button tab
Shannon fabrics cuddle faux suede featured
I LOVE this fabric! It is so easy to stitch and the result is really like suede. You won't believe it!
Front View of faux suede jacket
fingertip length, Mandarin collar, 3/4 length sleeves, back button tab
Westminster Amy Butler Alchemy linen featured
fingertip length, folded collar, center back ruffles and button tab, ruffle trim on sleeves, & ruffle flower on jacket front featured in gray linen
Back View of linen jacket
knee length, folded collar, in-seam pockets, button tab
contrast fabric used on collar, pockets, button tab and sleeve edges
Moda Mixologie linen fabric featured
fingertip length, Mandarin collar, in-seam pockets, scalloped back yoke with purchased sew-on applique embellishment in cream linen
Back View
knee length, Mandarin collar, in-seam pockets, and center back ruffles
Moda enzyme washed linen
Back View
Happy Sewing!

October 10, 2014

Fall 2014 Collection: Meet Isabella!

knee length, short sleeves, sweetheart neckline
Moda Gardenvale fabric featured

It's that time of year again! I am not sure where summer went, but it was full of activity and fun. Now the light outside is beginning to change and the leaves are falling. Hopefully, the temps in Texas will be too, soon. It is October, after all!

I have been hard at work getting the fall designs together and today I reveal the first of three designs, the Isabella Dress! A version of this dress has been floating around in my brain for a while and it was finally time to get it into fabric. It is a VERY retro shirtdress design with a curved waistline, gathered bodice, and princess seaming in the skirt. I decided to provide a couple of neckline options: V-neck or sweetheart. The front bodice of either works beautifully with the rest of the pattern pieces, so there is only one facing and front to worry about changing out to switch the look. There are also two different length set-in sleeves and a variety of skirt lengths to suit whatever look you are after.

I found that this dress is a fantastic companion piece for a jacket, as its slim silhouette works well underneath. Depending on the design details and fabric you choose, you can have a wonderful casual tunic to wear with leggings or an elegant dress with heels, and really anything in between. I would say that my favorite length for this dress is the knee length, but I really like the way it stitched up in every length.

Even though this design is rather slim, the A-line princess seaming in the skirt and elevated waistline are truly flattering. You won't believe how skinny this dress can make you look!

You will see that the waistline is accented with tiny piping. If you haven't ever made or sewn with piping, it is really easy, so don't let that distract you. All you will need is a zipper foot and some cording and you'll be good to go! You also have the option to finish out the front with buttons or snaps. I added snaps to the butterfly fabric tunic and they were so easy to install. I love the look and ease of wear with snaps. I think I'll definitely be using more of them in the future!

If you have never worked with snaps, I highly recommend that you check out Snap Source. They have wonderful snaps and their tool is THE BEST, hands down. No clumsy pliers that only work about half the time....check them out! You won't be sorry.

This dress works well in a variety of fabrics. I suggest cotton, cotton lawn or voile, rayon, silk, or lightweight linen. There are other wovens that I am sure I am not thinking of now that would also work well, but this is a good starting list for fabrics to consider for the design.

So, here are some variations of the new dress along with design details and fabric info.

The new stock should be here NEXT WEEK (week of Oct. 13), so we'll be working to get the new designs up on the website for you to order.

below knee length, short sleeves, V-neck
Riley Blake The Cottage Garden fabric featured
tunic length, elbow length sleeve, V-neck (snap closure)
Art Gallery Winged fabric featured
knee length, short sleeve, V-neck
Free Spirit Fabric Dowry by Anna Maria Horner featured
above knee length, short sleeves, V-neck
Moda Color Theory fabric featured
above knee length, short sleeve, sweetheart neckline
Moda Regent Street cotton lawn fabric featured
below knee length, elbow length sleeve, sweetheart neckline
Michael Miller Emma's Garden fabric featured
knee length, short sleeve, V-neck
Windham Cascade fabric featured
Back View
Happy Sewing!