Monday, October 26, 2015

Pattern Review: Boardwalk Skirt

We recently had a first at Sew Cool; we were offered some fabric to try out and then if we liked it, we were asked to share it with all of you.

You may have seen companies that will print the fabric of your own design on various types of fabric.  And they usually also have other's designs that you can simply choose from.  Well, there is a new company out there called My Fabric Designs and they sent us one yard of basic cotton woven fabric.  My Fabric Designs actually has 26 types of fabrics ranging from voile, to knits, pant weights! Just think of the coordinating outfits you could make using the same print on different fabric types. The price of these custom fabrics are not inexpensive but the designs are quite unique and you have so many options to make sure it is the perfect fabric for a special project.

 I had my daughter search through the site and pick the print, since I would be sewing it for her. There were a TON to choose from!  I would have had a horrible time picking one.  There were all sorts of different styles so I am sure you all will something that appeals to you.  (And, in case you are considering checking out My Fabric Designs' selection, make sure you get to the bottom of this post because we have a coupon code and a give away!)


She picked a print with many different nautical compasses with shades of greens and blues.  When it arrived, I washed it up to see what it was like.  It did shrink a little, but not bad for a cotton and I still had over 35 inches with 54 inches wide.

It had such a large bold design, I thought it would be good to not cut it up to much and find a pattern that would allow it to simply shine.  After I looked a bit online, I realized I already owned the right pattern but had yet to sew it.

tween sewing
yes, her eyes are closed ... and they were in EVERY picture.  ugh.

Name of the pattern:  Boardwalk Skirt 

Pattern Source:  You can find it at Go To Patterns and at least for now, it is FREE.

Sizes available: 6 months to 14 years

Special materials required:  This is a double layer skirt that has a drawstring option and a lace trim option so you will need those materials if you want to go those routes.  You will also need elastic for the waist band.

Skill level required: Beginner

tween sewing
I actually color blocked the under skirt with a dark blue in the back and light in the front.

Good:  It is an easy skirt with a little something special because of the double layer.  It only took a couple hours and that is with distractions.

Bad:  My tween was a bit unsure about it because it was such a full skirt.  She no longer desires great twirl factor or fancy gathers and ruffles ... she thinks she has grown out of them.  So, you need to talk to your tween before sewing it.  By the end of the day, she was satisfied with it but I am not how often she will fish it out of the closet.

tween sewing

Overall pattern rating:  I am unsure about this rating.  It is a gathered skirt and not anything wildly different.  However, the instructions were very clear and it was the perfect pattern to show off a fabric like the one I got at My Fabric Designs.

And as promised, we have a coupon code!!!  Just head on over to My Fabric Designs and use the code blog25 and you will get 25% off your next purchase.  (oh, and none of the links in this post are affiliate links)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, October 19, 2015

Long Sleeve Day Tripper Top

One of the dolman tops I rounded up on the Would They Wear That? Dolman Tops was one I had sewed in the past, the Day Tripper by Shwin and Shwin Designs.  You can see that short sleeve version HERE.

Sew Cool for the Tween Scene

Here, I made a long sleeve version.  My daughter wears it all the time but I can't seem to get a good picture in it.

Sew Cool for the Tween Scene

As a reminder, this is a woman's top.  Only the smallest size is good for tweens.  But it is another option for those that are growing out of the available tween sized patterns.

Sew Cool for the Tween Scene

Monday, October 12, 2015

Would They Wear That---Car Wash Pleats?

So as I was perusing the internet looking at Fall fashion trends, I came across this one...Car Wash Pleats. While I'm not exactly sure how they are made, I have some ideas to how you could do it...the question is would I want to and would your tween really want to wear them?
Here's a collection of some of the looks:
Carwash pleats made their case early in New York for being the skirt shape of the season and then by the time Paris rolled around and Raf Simons showed them on the Christian Dior runway, their fate was certain. The new way to show off those gams next season will be through these pleats.
wearable trends carwash skirt square
So the question is...Would they Wear That? Let us know what your tween thinks and if there is enough interest, we'll have a tutorial on how to get the look...unless you just want to slash a skirt to get it:)

Monday, October 5, 2015

Pattern Review: Playground to Palace Dress

Halloween is fast approaching and I have been sewing like mad on my children's costumes hoping to not be doing anything at the last minute this year.  But instead of staying focused and on task, I jumped at a chance to test a new pattern by Ruby and Jack.  I actually had never heard of this pattern maker before, but on a sewing group I answered the tester call because the description of the pattern sounded great.

It was billed as a princess dress as comfy as a tee-shirt.  Well, what tween does not live in tee-shirts?

So I paused on my projects stacking up on the table and set out to test a pattern for a knit princess dress.

Fittingly, the bodice has princess lines and the skirt is a cross between a gored skirt and circle skirt. The skirt can actually be made with knit or with a woven but the woven requires extra fabric and is gathered.


I searched my stash and found the fanciest knit I had and managed to just squeak by without having to purchase more.  I very much enjoyed sewing this dress.  Even in it's testing form, it was an easy sew and the adjustments she made after our feedback really make it a fun pattern.

The dress is called the Playground to Palace Dress because it is a comfortable way to dress up.  If you have little ones that dress up, this would be a great dress for them too because it can be just pulled over regular clothes.  But, for a tween, it can easily be adapted for many a version of princess costume.


Sizes available:  It comes in sizes 12 months to 12 years and I found it ran very true to my child's measurements.

Special materials required:  The simplest version of the pattern requires knit fabric.  But there are versions for organza over lays, a cape, or a sash similar to the Cinderella dress of the new  movie.

Here are some photos of other versions:


Skill level required:  I thought this dress was super easy.  It does not have any closures and has no fancy techniques.  If you are new to knits, this may be a good starter pattern.


Good:  I liked how I could make a costume with this pattern or simply a lovely dress.  I think the princess lines were quite beautiful on my daughter.

Bad:  Because it is meant to be primarily for dress up, you may get limited use out of the pattern.  Some our our tweens are quickly leaving the princess phase.


Overall pattern rating:  As a costume or special occasion dress, I would give this pattern 4 bolts.  But as tween focused pattern, I may drop it down to 3.5.  I don't think that is truly fair because not all tweens are out of the princess phase but if you don't have younger girls to sew for, I can't help but think this pattern may be limited for some audiences.  

Until the 10th of October, 2015 it is on sale for only $5!