Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Stepping out in style...with the Downtown Tunic

I recently had the opportunity to test the new Downtown Tunic from Sew Caroline, and this top is just about perfect for what I know is warmer days ahead!  Winter cannot possibly stick around for much longer, right? 

This little number is so perfect for pairing with a pair of slacks or leggings for an evening out or with jeans for running around town!  It’s a knit woven combo and the best part? No set in sleeves!!!  I loved that it was all one piece on the top with cuffs at the sleeves.  The hi-lo skirt has two options: a solid skirt or a button front skirt.  I couldn’t resist, and I made one of each.  For the test, I let my kids pick the fabrics.  I admit I was a little terrified of what they would pick but they did alright!  Not what I would have picked for myself, but they did alright nevertheless! 

So, a little bit about the pattern!  It comes in sizes XS to XXXL, and as I said, it’s such a quick and easy sew!  It took longer for me to glue the pattern pieces together than to sew the shirt!  There is a front piece and a back piece, the cuffs, the neckband, and the skirt pieces.  Voila, that’s it!  The pattern is rated for the confident beginner, and it really is a great pattern for beginners.  Don’t let the knit part of this scare you!  There is nothing scary about this shirt at all!  There are pictures to help you out along the way, and you can email Caroline if you have any questions!  She’s super sweet and so helpful at answering questions you might have!  

As I said, the top has a hi-lo skirt on it so it’s a little longer in the back, which I love because I have—ahem—some baggage back there…and the shirt fits a little loose so I can move around in it which makes this great for chasing after my 4 and 5 year little’s.  I already have fabric picked out for at least 3 or 4 more of these tops! 

If you’re thinking you might need this pattern in your life, and I know you are, you can get it here:

AND, if you use the code DTTRELEASE15, you can get the Downtown Tunic for 15% off the purchase price.  This code is good until midnight CST 03/01/15!!

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

I love the Love Bird (dress, that is)!

I recently had the opportunity to test the new Love Bird Dress from MCM Studio Designs, and I do believe that it is definitely one of my favorites.  This dress has so many options from being tea length to just below knee length, ruffled, non ruffled, petal sleeved, cap sleeved, sleeveless, with an apron, without an apron, with a sash, without a sash...the possibilities are crazy endless!  The back has a sweet little heart shape that made me think Valentine's at first, but my daughter saw that and that was all she wrote.  She wants hearts on all of her dresses now!
Front view with sash
So, anyway, this was the first pattern that I had worked with from MCM Studio Design, and it really was such an easy pattern to work with.  Once I got in the groove, this dress came together quickly with no fuss and no muss.  I made both the longer length and the shorter length. While I love the longer length for more formal occasions, the shorter length is perfect for casual gatherings or everyday wear.
Below the knee, 3 tier length
I did make the ruffled version for both of these dresses because well, I love me some ruffles...AND this dress made me love them even more!  Yes, ladies and gentlemen, that is possible!  Linda introduced me to a ruffling method that requires NO GATHERING!  Say what?  Yeah, you heard me, no gathering.  That's a song I can definitely sing!  Her instructions walked me step by step with illustrations on each step.  They were very clear and concise, and I had no problem following the steps as I was going through the pattern.  
Ruffled shorter version
Ruffled formal version
The pattern itself ranges from sizes 2 to 14 so there's plenty of opportunity for me to get some serious mileage from this pattern.  I will say ahead of time that there are a lot of pattern piece pages, but let me tell you, it was so worth it when I got the dress done!  Both of my models are "very particular" (okay, picky) about their clothing, and both young ladies were over the moon with their new fancy dresses.  I made both a sash and an apron for the longer version so that the fabulous Miss K would have some options when it's finally warm enough for her to wear this dress.  So far, every weekend has been cruddy so she's not had the opportunity to wear it, but we're praying the groundhog was wrong and winter is going to be head out early this year.  My own mini me has already piled up the fabrics she wants for hers, and she's got a pretty good "Mommy do" list going on.  Now for more hours in the day...
Tea length with apron

Seriously, though, this dress is packed full of different options and really is so very versatile.  If you don't have this one, you NEED it!  You can pick the pattern up in Linda's Craftsy store or her Etsy store.

If you head over there between now and Monday (16 February), she has a discount code: RELEASE25 that you can use so the pattern will be $8 instead of the usual $12!

And if you get stuck for some reason, there is a Facebook group (https://www.facebook.com/MCMStudioDesigns) you can join where you can ask questions!  Linda is so sweet and is so great at walking through things with you to help you get back on track!

Happy sewing and I really hope you love this dress as much as I do!!