This has been a busy week over here at The Needle And The Belle! Let’s just jump into today’s Sunday Lately.
Sunday Lately #151
Thanksgiving is this week which means my family will be road tripping! Truthfully I hate road tripping but I’m welcoming this break on the road since I’ve been going non-stop with work.
This week I’ll be with both my parents, aunts, uncles, cousins, brother and more so there will be LOTS of hugging and I cannot wait!!! This will be the first time many of them meet my son (still weird to say) so there will be lots of snuggles.
Can we pause and give thanks for me sitting in this awesome Kia Sedona in SILENCE as the kids bring in the groceries? There’s nothing like hearing absolutely nothing!!!
Over fabric and the patterns that are in testing right now. I wish I could take weeks off from life to sit and sew all the things!!! Plus it’s time for plaids!!!! Gaaaaahhh!!! I want plaid and velvet everywhere!!!
Well, not in this moment but I did just finish up the Spicy Chirizo sandwich from Starbucks. Have you tasted their holiday drinks?!? Talk about yum!!! I’m loving this Toasted White Chocolate Mocha.
Cheers to the new week and Happy Thanksgiving!!!
I love an easy pattern to sew. You know what I love more? An easy pattern that I can make for myself and my girls and that’s just what the Catherine Dress offers.
Made For Mermaids Catherine Dress Bundle
You guys already know that Made for Mermaids is one of my favorite pattern makers. They create these wonderfully elegant patterns that just speak to my spirit and they did it again with this Catherine collection. This dress features a lined smock top that goes into a gathered skirt. I’m sure that vocabulary is ALL wrong but the pictures do a better job of explaining than my words can. There’s also a fancy sleeve option which my daughter absolutely loves.
Way easier than I thought it would be! I generally don’t do lined things because, well, they seem hard. But I did it not once, not twice, not three times but four times in making this pattern! I had to make myself two version during the test and I’m currently working on another dress because they’re so easy to make!!! My daughter helped to make the dolly one and she loved being involved.
Fabric And Styling
We used a Rayon blend for ours that had a nice drape but was thinner because of the gathering. This fabric came from Pretty Posh Prints during their fast fingers sale. It’s not the easiest fabric to work with but it’s totally worth it. The one that I’m working on now has a woven bottom from Art Gallery and I can’t wait to see how it comes out!!! When making the top, it pairs well with leggings or something with a skinny leg to balance out the flowy top. I love my dress with boots!
Definitely a 5 out of 5 needles!!!
Grab your copy here:
Click the image below for the nursing hack I did for the Made for Mermaids blog!
When I returned to sewing I didn’t think that there would be quite the community there is today. One of my sewing friends recently started designing patterns and this is her first one! Naturally I was super excited to test the Rory top & dress for her!
The Rory Dress & Top
As a mom of 3 struggling with body image issues, there’s nothing like a piece of clothing that makes you feel beautiful and that’s just what this does. This is a turtleneck bodice with a circle skirt bottom. The sleeve options are half, 3/4 and full and the bottom options are peplum, dress and full skirt.
Super easy. The pattern took all of 15 minutes to tape together and then another 30 to sew. I love and quick and easy pattern that’s offers so much versatility!!!
I chose to make the top as I’m still working on the nursing hack for the dress. I styled this with leggings and over the knee boots but I can also see the dress paired with booties. My fabric is a thinner scuba knit that I got from Knitpop in an auction box.
Naturally this gets a 5 out of 5 needles!!! It’s easy to sew and perfect for daily wear!
Grab your copy here:
Petite Stitchery The Rory Dress
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Guys. It’s my favorite time of the year. It’s boots and hoodie season!!! So why is this big? Because Ellie & Mac have a new hoodie that they just released!!!
Game Time Hoodie by Ellie And Mac
This is not your typical hoodie as the construction is way easier. Complete honesty: I suck at lining the hood up correctly on normal hoodies–we all have our weaknesses, right? Well that hoodie thing is mine which is why I’ve only made on in the past. But the Game Time Hoodie goes on super easy and is similar to a neckband. This pattern also features a tutorial to making a faux drawstring too!
Ellie & Mac now has no trim pages so piecing things together was a breeze. There are only 6 pieces for the pattern and it took maybe 45 minutes to put together. There’s no band on the bottom or sleeves though there is an option to create a thumb-hole.
I love this hoodie and so far the feedback has been great for it. I love that this can be dressed down with joggers or leggings and look equally as good with jeans. Fabric choice really makes this hoodie versatile since it doesn’t have a sweatshirt cut.
I used a distressed triblend from Allielaine in Abbyville which can be found here. When I tell you that I never want to take this hoodie off, I mean it. I think I need to make my next one in some French Terry!
This pattern definitely gets rated a five out of five needles as it is super easy to put together and really comfortable to wear everywhere.
Are you excited about boots and hoodie season? Do you have a go-to hoodie pattern?
Love this pattern? Be sure to grab yours here:
Women’s Game Time Hoodie
Up until last year, I didn’t know PDF patterns were a thing. The very first pattern that I bought were the Peg Legs by Patterns for Pirates. I struggled trying to piece together the pattern and my stubbornness wouldn’t let me watch their YouTube video on the ease of putting it together. As Hancock Fabrics was going out of business, I stocked up on all the traditional patterns I could.
And I haven’t used not one of them.
Bye Bye Traditional Patterns
I’ve tried to use traditional patterns since I started sewing over 20 years ago. Geez… I feel really old all of a sudden but I digress… Back then I couldn’t understand the directions and when I started back up sewing 10 years ago I tried again with all the easy patterns only to find myself lost amidst thousands of pieces and terrible directions to create a semi-mediocre piece of clothing.
The sad thing is to this day, I can still count on one hand how many things I’ve successfully made from using a traditional pattern. Even though with the help of Hancock Fabrics I now have some 100+ traditional patterns, I still refuse to use them. Ok, not all of them. I will use the Kwik Sew patterns because they’re made of a thicker paper so it’s not so hard to cut out. Their directions are also way easier to follow than most others.
The main reason I don’t like the traditional patterns is because once you cut your size you’re using, that’s it. Sure if you’re experienced you can grade out but if you’re a lazy seamstress like myself, this sucks. In this moment, I’m wearing plus sized maternity but this is about to change. I do plan on getting smaller and traditional patterns just don’t account for size changes in women or children.
PDF Patterns Are Bae
Ok so I struggled through my first one and possibly my second one but now? I’m like expert level at piecing together these patterns. It only takes me about 15 minutes to put together and cut out the pattern to use. The best part about these is as my family and I change sizes, I can always reprint so I don’t lose my favorite clothing!
PDF patterns are also tested on the everyday woman–all of us. I love being able to be part of a community of PDF sewists and get questions answered from the pattern designers or other experts. You don’t get that with the traditional patterns. And the instructions are always so much easier to follow. All the tester groups I’m apart of have been intentional about making patterns easy to understand for all levels of sewing.
If you’re struggling to get started in the sewing arena I totally recommend ditching the traditional patterns and going the PDF way. Not sure if you want to make the investment? Most PDF designers offer freebies for joining their groups!
Are you a PDF or traditional pattern lover?