Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Linky Party Wrap Up

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This week I thought we'd show case something a little fancy for a girl:
copycat tulle skirt

And something a little casual (and perfect for Fall!)

As well as something a little more formal for the tween guys:
Green Shirt 4

And something a little more casual:

Thanks to all for sharing! We love to see what everyone has made and come up with new ideas for out tweens!

Monday, September 22, 2014

Tutorial: conserving patterns

Pin It Do you use PDF or paper patterns?  I use both, and they each have their own draw backs and highlights.  But what I do like about a pdf pattern is that I can cut it to the size I need, and then, when my kids grow reprint and cut the new size.

But with paper patterns, if you cut out the size you need, you are pretty much stuck and would have to re-purchase the pattern.  If I want to save a paper pattern for future use, I will use the following technique.

using the small size without cutting away the larger size

First, I cut the pattern out using the outermost line, regardless of size.  On the straight lines, it is easy; fold on the size you want to use.  It is on the curved parts that things can get tricky.  I slice down to the size I want to use perpindicular to the cutting line.

This will make small wedges that can now be folded under smoothly.  Continue around all curved edges.

When you cut around the pattern, you will need to be careful to not snip the edge of the pattern.  That would cut the fold, and defeat the purpose of all that work for conserving.

Do you have any tricks to conserve your patterns?

Friday, September 19, 2014

Review--Shawl Collar Pullover by Greenstyle

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 Remember a little while ago there was that Bundle Up sale for boys patterns?  Well I decided it just isn't for boys, so I'm set on trying out some of those "boys" patterns...but for my girls (mostly because my boys don't really want me to sew for them).
First up, the Shawl Collar Pullover from Greenstyle Creations and this one was a hit.
Sophia picked out some aqua micro fleece at JoAnn's and decided she didn't want anything else, no contrasts, no embellishments...just a simple pullover for those cool Fall days that are coming.
 For this pattern you don't really need anything special, just middle to heavy weight knit fabric. Check the pattern for fabric requirements, but I got mine out of 1 1/2 yards. I sewed up a size 10 and it's roomy enough for layering, but not with anything too bulky.
 Good: This pullover is a quick and easy sew, with minimal pieces, great instructions and details when needed. Plus it comes in a wide range of sizes (2-16) and would work for boys and girls.
 Bad: This is probably more user error than anything, but attaching the shawl collar got me. I really had to sit and think about how it went on there and even though there were pictures, my brain just wasn't getting it (do you ever have those moments?). And even after all of that puzzling, I still got little puckers on my corners. Next time I'll do better though.
Ugly: No ugly for this's a great pattern!
I give the Shawl Collar Pullover by Greenstyle Creations 4 bolts out of 5. If you are looking for a great unisex pattern perfect for the coming months you should check it out!

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

A Look at Fall Fashion Trends and the Patterns to Make Them

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This Fall it looks like colors and mixing patterns is on trend...which is always kind of fun for tweens. What better way to express one's self than going for a statement, whether it be bold or subtle with colors and patterns?
Here are just a few that caught my eyes for some great girl's looks.
All sources are linked in the caption of the pictures...all patterns are suggestions. We haven't sewn most of them...they are just thoughts on how to achieve the look.
First up a great simple look that could go casual or a little more formal...just throw on a colorful scarf and you are set for Fall!
Autumn Skirt
Olive Juice
Want to try for this are some suggestions for patterns:
Boardwalk Skirt Pattern
Tinley Tee
And here are some tutorials:
A great skirt tutorial for this look
A t-Shirt tutorial
I love how this look just SAYS Fall.  And again it would be simple to achieve.
Liberty Print Bailey Top
Olive Juice
Josephine Blouse and Dress Pattern
Top Pattern
V-Neck Cardigan
Cardigan Sweater Pattern
This look is another great one that mixes casual and fancy, as well as adding texture with different types of fabrics.
Easy to wear with strong graphic details, girlswear from Angel and Rocket fall/winter 14
Great Mix of Fabrics and Prints by Angel and Rocket
Easy to follow Tulle skirt tutorial
Leggings Pattern by Go To Patterns
Love Notions Leggin's 2T - 14yrs
Free Leggings Pattern by Love Notions
This is probably my favorite Fall look that I came across.  Simple lines, pops of color and understated beauty of the tunic it. And I kind of love the boots too...
Fall/winter 2014 kids fashion collections at
Colorful Look from Ladida
Here are 2 tunic patterns that you could lengthen for the longer tunic look:
PDF Pattern - Fay Top for 4 - 10 years old and tutorial.
Esme Top Sewing Pattern by Sew Liberated
Esme Top...goes down to a women's size 2
Another colorful Fall outfit
Fall/winter 2014 kids fashion collections at
Great Fall Look with lots of Color from Ladida
An Easy Vest Pattern
Anywhere Dress
The Anywhere Dress by Go To Patterns
The mixing of patterns just says tween to me for some reason and this outfit is just adorable!
What are some great Fall looks/trends you've seen around?

Monday, September 15, 2014

Pattern Review: Simplicity 3881

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pattern review

Today I want to review a pattern I have had for a while but use at least once a year; Simplicity 3881. I sewed this version for my daughter a while ago but had not yet reviewed it here on Sew Cool. It is a pattern containing many options.  It comes with a dress, pants, and top.  I have sewn the dress a couple times; once for my niece and once for my daughter.

In this version I substituted the bubble skirt with a circle skirt and my daughter loves it.  The V-neckline does run a bit low, so she always layers it; either with a tank top when it is warm, or a long sleeve during cooler temperatures.

Sizing:  The pattern goes up to size 14 and has a plus size version, if you can find it.

Special Materials:  This and the other views on this pattern require knit fabrics.

The Good and Bad:  The pattern is simple and great for beginners and has some details.  It is a bit trendy and to me has an 80's vibe, so if you don't like that kind of thing, it is not the pattern for you.

Overall rating:  I give this pattern 4 bolts.  It is not one of my favorites but the fact I have sewn it so many times really does say something.   I think a novice and an experienced sewer could get some good use out of it.