Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Sofliantjes {Brueram Dress} A review

One of the best things about testing patterns for me, is that it forces me to step out of my comfort zone and try things that I put off because they look intimidating. For example shirring! I have seen many many patterns over the past year that use that technique but have avoided them because well, it looks pretty darn intimidating! especially as a beginner sewer. Not that I can probably call myself a beginner anymore? Advanced beginner? Intermediate? some where in between I think!

Normally I lean towards patterns that call for knit, this one was a woven one it was nice to get back to the wovens, even if for a short time ;)

I have tested for Sofilantjes before, so I knew that when she did a tester call for the Brueram dress, and that even though it called for shirring, I couldn't pass up the opportunity to try! knowing the end result would be worth over coming my fear of it.

The pattern doesn't explain how to shirr it assumes that you know how to. After asking around, I was pointed in the direction of the Make it Love it blog post about it, which was great and well made it sound really simple, even though  I have a brother machine with a drop in bobbin!

So I jumped right in! I was testing the maxi dress version, sadly as I was cutting out the material I realised that I didn't have enough fabric for the maxi dress length! so it ends up hitting calf level... which I will admit I love just a little bit!

There are three different skirt options; A peplum top, Petal skirt and Maxi skirt. There are also two options for the bodice; Elastic casing and Shirring.

It also uses under stitching, enclosed seams, hand stitched hemming and the bodice is fully lined!

The size range is great too size 12 months to size 14, however due to the bodice its not recommended for developing figures.

There is also the awesome feature of layers, you can only print the size you want, and with the printing chart it really cuts down the amount of pages you need to print! and for those wondering the maxi dress skirt part is just measurements for the rectangle, so no wasted paper printing off the skirt pattern!

I used quilting cotton for my bodice which meant I had to really steam the shirring to get the right look, its recommended to use lighter fabrics for the bodice so next time I think I will use some poplin ect.. an excuse to pick some poplin up next shopping trip... I'm down with that!

Size 5 Maxidress (shortened) and Shirred bodice

Miss A, love it, throughout the fitting process she kept getting angry at me for taking it off her, and she wore it out to dinner that night.

The instruction to make the dress are well written and easy to follow, great for a confident beginner that wants to jump out side their comfort zone. The end result is timeless and any little girl will love this dress!

I will be making this one again, so why don't you? Miss A gives it her smile of approval! Get your copy of the Brueram Dress pattern while it is on sale for $5 for two days only!

Friday, April 24, 2015

Love Notions {Ladies Bluezette Pattern} A review

After being lucky enough to test the girls Bluezette by Love Notions, I instantly jumped at the chance to test out the Ladies version. This one has even MORE options then the girls one... just what us women want! something we can customise to suit our needs.

This one is part of Bundle up May sale! lots of amazing patterns in that bundle that I can't wait to get my hands on. Nothing like a bit of selfish sewing!

Now to the Pattern details...

Two bodice options, Slim fit and Blousey
Three sleeve lengths; Tank, Short and elbow 
Five skirt options; Tulip, Hi-low, Maxi, Gathered short and circle skirt.

The bodice can be fully lined, as is the skirt! which means you can use those pretty sheer fabrics like lace, chiffon ect.

This pattern has it all, Layers so you only have to print your size, no trim! for both US paper and AU, a lot of effort went into making sure that it worked for everyone! It makes the putting together this large pattern a breeze and its something I wish all designers would do!

This pattern taught me a few things I didn't know how to do before.. elastic casings and the buritto method for having that classy finish on the bodice, along with the understitching. It looks like something you buy right off the rack.. except it fits perfectly.

I especially love the option for the blousey bodice, perfect for hiding that not so perfect mummy tummy as a result of 4 kids, but at the same time doesn't look like your wearing a sack, The elastic waist really shows some definition and accentuates the figure that most clothes hide. You can adjust where it sits which is a bonus! either natural waist, up higher under the bust or down lower which really lets you get different looks out of just the one dress!

I loved the Tulip version I made so much that I had to made a second one and try the Maxi version, sadly I ran out of fabric for the bodice so I added the contrast panel at the back,, and I love it! It really ties the top and bottom in and I get compliments every time I wear it!

Size Small Blousey Bodice with Tulip Skirt
Size Small Blousey Bodice with Maxi Skirt

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Love Notions {Lotus Blossom Top Girls and Ladies} A Review

Ready for a quick sew? but something with a little twist! literally? then look no further then the lotus blossom! I have been lucky enough to yet again test this new pattern from Love Notions! and yet again Tami does not fail to impress.

Girls and Ladies were tested at the same time, so its great if you want to make some mummy and me sets! Its a dolman style top and it literally just 3 pieces of fabric... (2 if you dont want to do the little bit at the back).

Its very comfortable and the twisty part at the front does really well at hiding that mummy tummy, and the back piece has a shirt tail hem! Looks fab over jeans! and well over anything.

Like usual we have a really great range of sizes, the girls is from 2T to 16 and the ladies is from XS to XXXL.

I think one of my favourite parts of this pattern, is the feature fabric on the back! I was able to use up scrap bits of knit that I have in my stash! so its a great little stash buster. Some of the testers used lace which looks amazing and reminds me I need to get some stretch lace into my stash at some point.

Size 5T girls, using a poly knit for the main fabric
My gorgeous 4 year old miss A loved it and refused to take it off after letting me get some tester photos of it! I did add a little modesty panel on her version, I thought it would be nice to add a bit of pop of colour and tie it into the back part as well.

I loved mine just as much! Normally I don't like to use white/cream because I am useless and always get it dirty, but as this pattern make uses of fabric that is the same on the front as it is on the back my choices were limited and I really wanted to use what was in my stash without having to buy more (tempting as it was to go and buy MORE fabric haha) but I really loooooove how this turned out! and the V-neck is just so sexy, This pattern will be used time and time again and become a wardrobe staple in not only mine but my girls!

Size Small Ladies, using some of my favourite knit on the back. Alice in Wonderland! From The Art of Fabric
Tami has just recently updated all her ladies patterns to be no trim and have the A4 guidelines! which is fantastic! so there is no trimming paper! just tape, cutout, cut out fabric and sew together! all up the whole process too me around and hour for the first one, the second one was much quicker because I knew what I was doing.
Size 12 seamed front option

I managed to find time to squeeze in one more test! this time using the instructions to use pattern printed fabric that is not the same on both sides, this added part really opens up the options in this patter, and once again shows just how much Tami listens to her testers

definitely recommend! Both Girls and Ladies have been put in a bundle together too so you can save money.. you know you want too!