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Kelly behind Sewing in No Mans Land and some of her co-conspirators have launched a wonderful subscription club for sewing enthusiasts. The Sew What Club. Seriously if you love sewing clothes for kids please check it out! 

The dress above is the Lyon – a super slip dress that can be made in either knit or woven fabric.
My first version was a woven with our holiday next month in mind. Obviously I didn’t really allow for the fact that when taking pics of it it was going to be -3 and requite madam to have multiple layers on! 

It was lovely and simple to sew up but very stylish when worn – the perfect combination! It really does look lovely and summery when its not layered with wool and tights! The knit version is also great. Very comfy and easy to wear for little lady. I finished a Lyon hack that I’d had in mind and it only took an hour to sew up. Even in knit and thats usually takes me ages as I’m super slow sewing knit. I’ve done my hack as a short tunic with a thick hem band and chunky neck and sleeve bands. Pics are on my Instagram. I cannot wait to make more and I do think this will become a stable summer knit/jersey dress.

The other pattern released this month is the Annecy Dress. Oh my, this is a doozy of the dress. Its summery, and strappy and gorgeous. There are delightful little details like piping on the sides and straps, a thick hem band and options to do some creative colour blocking. A perfect combination of pretty party dress if you want to go wild with fabrics. Or a casual everyday summer dress if you keep it simple.

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As you can see, in the month between making the dresses and taking immediate pics of the Annecy but waiting a few weeks before photographing the Lyon – the weather somewhat changed! 

I am not at all affiliated to The Sew What Club or Sewing In No Mans Land. Just an admirer of the patterns they produce and lucky enough to get to test some of them out 🙂

July 9, 2015 Sewing

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Since madam has how grown her flower boots that I made earlier in the year I have been meaning to get round to making her some more slipper boots. Since it snot wintery and cold they needed to be super warm, and also. If possible, go on over both ballet and jazz shoes – she wears slipper sot keep her feet toasty while waiting for her lessons.

This coincided with Lisa’s Tie Back Boot pattern being tested and now .. released!!

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The boots are very similar to the flower boot, but feature a tie around the ankle. Now I should mention that in the pics on mine it a shoe lace tie – blame the kid dictator that rules my house. The pattern calls for elastic cord or elastic lace as the tie back. Super clever as it give great support holding the boot snugly on the foot but is easy on and off. Some of the testers have don amazing things with fabrics and ties and have create the most amazing looking boots.

Mine were all about functionality and styling by the small dictator. warm fleece outers, cotton inner and neon pink ties. more jazz than ballet in styling! The boots themselves are super simple to sew up, they took me less than an hour and look so cute. As always Lisa’s instructions are easy to follow and there are plenty of pics for those (like me!) need a visual prompt! They don’t require much fabric (even for madams elephant feet) so are perfect for up cycling jumpers or stash busting.  I’ve made a couple as gifts as well.

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The pattern is available at Big Little and if you use the code BOOTS its on offer!! Just whats needed for cosy toes and keeping those chilblains at bay this winter!

July 3, 2015 Sewing

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I was lucky enough recently to test Lisa from Big Little‘s most recent release. The Wild Thing Hooded Scarf. We are huge fans of this in our house. HUGE fans.

Me, because the patterns is super easy to follow and sews up in no time at all (it would be the most awesome wintery gift for Christmas or cooler season birthdays) and isn’t too fabric hungry. Madam because, well. Look at it. Pony hat!!
From cutting to completion its about a 40 minute sew up – probably less if your not trying to drink tea and eat biscuits while doing it! You don’t need anything fancy for the pattern and can mix and match the fabrics to your hearts content.

The pattern comes with a enormous variety of options, cowl, cross over or scarf. Pockets should you want them, little claws or paw pads. I chose a poly cotton outer for this pony version as it was in my stash needing used up and a soft minky fleece for the lining (and ears). The mane is rainbow felt cut from the wonderful parcel I received from the creative inspiration behind Wonky Patchwork. I couldn’t think of a more perfect project to start cutting into that precious stash than this.

We headed up to Castle Hill on a cool damp morning to try it out. We started out in down jackets and ended up in shirtsleeves as you can see – it got warm. But the hat. That stayed on madams head – no prompting at all. For me that was the biggest win of all. Smallest madam has pulled out this hat time and again since I made it – its her go-to hat.

Head off to Big Little on Facebook and check out some of the amazing hats that Lisa’s testers made .. they are wonderful! Then don’t forget to swing by and grab that pattern wile its on offer! Use the code WILDTHING to get it for $5

June 9, 2015 Crafting, Sewing

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This dress has been a wee while in the coming. It is the Sew Sweet Brooklyn dress. At the first pass it didn’t go together at all as I wanted and I all but threw in the towel. But the pattern kept calling to me. That neckline, those ties. The sleeves. the whole style of this pattern is a delight.

So I persevered. The pockets are an addition of my own, because. you know. Kids and pockets. It is a sz5 and pretty big on her. I altered the gathering a little, pushing more gathers to the back and front and leaving the sides only lightly gathered as the ties gather it themselves. It will last for ages yet looks good now – which is an awesome win win.

Madam got home from kindy today and her first words were ‘is my dress finished?’ She was delighted and wore it straight away. So that’s a bonus. There will certainly be more of those. Perhaps a shorter sleeved version for our holiday?

June 4, 2015 Crafting, Sewing

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I made up my second Lottie Skirt from Brownie Goose this week. Well, I finished the one I cut out about a month and a bit ago. What can I say, my work in progress pile is large and slow moving.

Its a lovely pattern – I think the pleated version is actually better looking on plainer fabrics that really show off and hold the pleats in. Madam is not 100% sold on it as she prefers elastic to buttons. I think my next till be to do a gathered version with an elasticated back. I love the fitted look but usability is where its at in this house.

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Its a versatile pattern though, great fit and easy to follow with multiple options and instructions. Its also pretty light on fabrics which is delightful as now madame is getting bigger things like dresses -particularly long sleeved ones – use a surprising amount of yardage. A skirt for under a yard, yes please.

May 27, 2015 Crafting, Sewing

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When Lisa asked for testers for this coat I put my hand up immediately. Ok, I did feel I was cheating slightly as I’ve made this coat before. I bough Lisa’s original pixie hooded coat pattern a couple of years ago and have made it a few times. But I did so want to try the woman’s version and the other collar options!

The coat above is the pixie hooded version. Made with the wool outer (up-cycled blanket) and the inner is a quilting weight cotton.  It is a lovely pattern to sew up. It comes together beautifully and the instructions are easy to follow (the new tutorial has even more instructions and pictures!) Please ignore the little tuck at the back. I failed to use my walking foot for the wool and it stretched while sewing and gave me an extra inch of fabric that I wasn’t expecting!

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This is the collared version. Or as madam calls it. Her puffy pea coat.

I reversed the layers and put the quilting weight cotton on the outer (she chose the cotton) and I lined it with a fleecy blanket that was no longer used. Its a size 5 so a little big – it looks more so as the cotton bunches more than the wool does – I’d consider interfacing it next time to give it a little more structure. The blanket is soft and fluffy and perfect around her neck and wrists. Not to mention warm.

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Massive picture overload as she wore it loads on our recent trip to Tekapo. I really do love this pattern. With the collar and rounded hood options available – and a huge size range it’s a really wonderful addition to any pattern collection. I think it would be wonderful in an oil cloth for a shower proof option or just in double cotton as a spring mac.

The pattern is available from the Big Little Etsy shop
Check out the Pixie Hooded Jacket or the Pea Coat
Both patterns have the huge age range of 1-14 years so this is a pattern that will last and last. Warm winter coats. Spring macs and autumn fuzzy fleeces. And the double bonus is that its discounted for the first week!
There is also a wonderful ladies version.

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The blouse in the pictures (from our trip to Tekapo) is the Lennon. It’s a relatively new pattern from the designer Brownie Goose available on Etsy. The Lennon is an adorable pattern with both blouse and dress options. Adorable Bishop sleeves and a curved hemline. The dress has a zipper back and the sweetest pleats ever. Its not hard to sew up and I think it will be a staple in our winter wardrobe. I just love how it looks tucked into a skirt!

Pictures all taken up at the Mount John Observatory in Tekapo.

March 6, 2015 Crafting, Sewing

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Madam decided that she wants to wear ‘dresses’ to bed. Nighties to the rest of the world. I had some cute owl flannel in the cupboard that I bought on sale at spotlight recently so I experimented with a peasant dress style. Some tweaking and I cut into the enchanted princess fabric that arrived this week. I adore how it looks and best thing ever is that madam does too. I used this free pattern and adjusted it a little. The fabric is from Alexander Henrys Once upon a Time Collection . It took me a while to to decide how to use this fabric. I wanted something that showcased the beautiful designs but also that would be well used and worn to death. PJ’s is the perfect solution for us. There is another one on my cutting table using Heather Ross’s Princess and the Pea. 

I also whipped up a pair of ‘Flower Boots’ from Big Little Patterns. Madam has been wanting a pair since she saw me making the pair I did for the pattern testing. Such a easy pattern to sew up. They literally took me an hour from start to finish. A butterfly on the front was requested and the result I think; speak for for my complete and utter lack of talent for cutting out free-hand shapes. Yeah – that thing on the front. Meant. To. Be. A. Butterfly. The boots where made from little scraps that have been hanging about for ages annoying me – perfect scrap buster. I like these slouchy ones and madam does too – but I’d love to try a sherpa lined pair with a stiffer canvas/drill outer at some point as I think that would also look amazing. 

I also made a pair of pants that go with each nightie. Personally I think they are awesome but its got to be serious winter weather to get her into trousers – even ones with princess on them!

February 21, 2015 Sewing

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I made these up a few weeks ago as a tester for Lisa’s pattern. They are going to a friends daughter for her birthday next month so are tucked away in the cupboard, wrapped in tissue paper. Little miss cannot wait for a pair of her own.

The pattern is from Big Little Patterns and can be found here – its currently on sale as its a new release! Go grab it now. The boots come in a variety of sizes from bootie size for babies right through to Youth sizes. Which is awesome as its a pattern you can use again and gain .. and again!

Sewing them up was an easy evening sew. Lovely and simple and super easy to follow instructions. The pattern pieces go together ever so smoothly and the result is wonderful. There is so much you could do to dress these up or down – I had a mess up with my leather for the soles so mine are sheepskin. The lining is up-cycyled cotton and the outer is up cycled wool. Its a great stash buster actually!

The flower is adorable but cold easily be left off if you have a boy or replaced with appliqué or a ‘patch’ if flowers aren’t your thing. You could cap the toe in suede. Pop a fringe round the top. Or pom poms .. who doesn’t love pom poms!

This is such a great pattern and I already have another pair cut and ready to sew for little madam – perfect as winter approaches.
Check out the pattern at 30% off for a short time here

February 15, 2015 Crafting, Sewing

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I tested this adorable pattern this week. I wasn’t able to give it my all as it turned into a busy hectic week and I got a touch stressed by life. However the pattern was easy and forgiving and come together so well. The embroidery details are delightful and fun to sew. There are 3 sizes. All adorable.

Actually it was a little win I needed!

I did the large which turns out a really decent size (mine will become a door stop for madams room). It really is a pattern where your imagination is the limit – some of the testers created the most amazing ‘shrooms. The details, colour and stitching blew me away. They are great stash busters for bits and pieces of felt or wool or even calico or fabrics. My daughter wants a minky one for bed!

These would make the most lovely gift for anyone big or small. They would be adorable as a decoration in a nursery or to create  warm cottage feel in a home and are designed to be functional, robust and stimulate imaginative play in children as well. How cute would a little village of them look?

Check out Big Little on Etsy and have a look at her wonderful patterns. Lisa is generously offering 50% off the Toadstools pattern until the end of the week. Use the code TOADSTOOL50 and you will only pay $3.75 (USD)!
Grab the Toadstools – you won’t regret it!

February 3, 2015 Crafting, Sewing

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