Category Archives: chit chat about handmade

general chit chat and support

Piper by Wardrobe by Me.

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Piper is a fun top, tunic or dress offering lots of options that can be interchanged to create your own style.  I had purchased the Piper a few years ago, it did take me a little while to sew as the shirring option made me hesitate, l wasn’t so good at shirring then.  Now the Piper has been re released with so many more options, options that make the Piper a really versatile pattern.

piper tunic

With options to wear sleeveless and two sleeve styles the Piper is perfect for almost all seasons.  For my first top which is sleeveless l chose some laced chiffon, it is quite sheer so a simple cami, the Carma cami is perfect to be worn underneath.

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This being view B with the tie neckline and gathered shoulders, it is very comfortable  to wear.  Adding sleeves adds warmth for a Spring evening.

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The instructions as usual for Wardrobe by Me patterns requires some knowledge of sewing as the instructions are not detailed but they are most easily followed.

My my second top l also made sleeveless for Spring and Summer.  This is view C with an adjusted hemline, such is the versatility of these patterns it is quite easy to just shorten the length to make which ever neckline, hemline, sleeveless or adding sleeves as you want.

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I like to upcycle as much as possible and the options are quite endless with just a little imagination.  Searching the op/thrift shops l was able to purchase an embroidered anglaise doona cover for $1 in perfect rarely used conditon.  Making sleeveless didn’t use much of the cover so there is plenty of fabric left to make tops for my grandaughters,  who said sewing was expensive, you really can get savvy and not cost much at all, you just need to do a bit of searching to find that special something that will be recreated into something different.

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The pattern is drafted for a height of 5’6″, l did not shorten my lace chiffon view b top, l adjusted the height for my View C (dress) top to simply make it top length.

piper tunic2To view the revised and very versatile Piper you can follow my aff link, this supports my pattern and fabric habit.

https://wardrobebyme.com?rfsn=297489.5288c

Happy crafting,

Leanne.

 

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SPRING DELIGHT,

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SPRING DELIGHT,

Welcome to my little blog and my turn on the Rebecca Page blog tour,  Turning the Page: Sewing for the Seasons.    You are in for a great ride, there will be lots of creativity, many great patterns showcased and foremost extremely creative seamstresses.  I would love for you to read to the end where you will see how you can win some great prizes from our generous sponsors. 

Spring is almost upon us in Australia, visions of bright and cheerful colours, garden parties and horse racing, welcome to my little part of Australia.  Casual strolls along the parklands to a more formal occasion, Spring has it all an opportunity for -:

turning the pages rp blog tour.

With an abundance of suitable patterns for Spring  ( and every other season)  Rebecca Page has options for an endless Spring wardrobe. Most patterns are available in childrens sizing so you can make a Spring wardrobe for them too.

It is currently windy, freezing in the minus temperatures where l live but l will be set for Spring when it arrives and yeah for that.

Whether a casual stroll or a little more formal garden party a maxi dress using a mash of the Meghan wrap dress and the Arabella skirt it was to be.  I love the crossover neckline of the Meghan but wanted a slightly gathered skirt, using a modified Arabella skirt option l was able to create a soft flowing maxi.  I am a little in love with maxi’s at the moment.

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My fabric which is from ‘Simply by Ti’ in the US was ideal for my maxi.  l received my fabric as part of a mystery box and l was not disappointed, the fabric is so soft and flowing, l love how it flows in the breeze. I will definately be searching for more fabric from Ti.  Meghan wrap dress is currently on sale in all sizes and also as a bundle.  The Meghan wrap is also a part of the Summer Maxi Collection & is on sale with a discount of 40% until the end of August.

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For something a little less formal the Peggy pencil skirt and the Paris top will be my go to quick sew garments,  suitably lovely for casual to dinner, classic styling never fails to disappoint.

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Choosing  double brushed poly from Lush fabrics Australia for my Peggy pencil skirt was a great choice, comfortable on trend and the longeveity to last for many years and still remain stylish.  For those who haven’t yet tried Lush Fabrics, oh you should it’s divine and so affordable.

The Paris top is a simple classic T, l chose to make mine in the crop option, l just had to use up every last piece of this gorgeous cotton lycra fabric from Thread Therapy here in Australia. (l actually have another dress in this fabric too).  Paris offers 2 neckline options, several sleeve options and two length options, did you know the Paris is also a free pattern with the code in the group here https://www.facebook.com/groups/mummykinsandme/

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Spring can be a little cool in the evenings where l live so a simple cover up is required, l can say l was so glad to have my wrap today as it was very windy and l needed some warmth.  Wanting something a little more fitted than a cardigan, l modified the Meghan wrap to create an elegant ballerina top which creates a whole new look.

l almost created a whole new look with the wind gusts that surrounded me, couldn’t keep a hair in place and so glad l had my Peggy on because if l was wearing anything more flowing l would have my underwear on show and that’s not a good look at all.

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Why purchase another pattern when you can utilise a pattern you already have. Modifying the Meghan from a dress to a ballerina top is quite simple, the basics of the pattern are already there. You will only need the bodice patterns, the sash which l modified to just attach at the bottom front to enable to wrap around.  l omitted the collar.

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You will need to reduce the length of the back bodice to coincide with the same measurement as the front bodice, simply just reduce the length from the back by measuring and ensuring the side seams are the same length.  l put a band around the neckline and front bodice by measuring the neckline and using 85% of that measurement plus a 1/4″ seam allowance x 2″ wide.  The band is then folded in half and attached along the front and back neckline.  Adding the neck band adds support to the neckline retaining shape.  You could also add a band to the bottom but l did not, l did a twin stitch hem on my ballerina top.

Do you also like to hack/mash put your own twist on a pattern?  I would love to hear how you get your ideas, my greatest inspiration is google pics and Pinterest, there is so much inspiration there.

l’d love for you to visit each blog on the tour showcasing so many of Rebecca Page patterns, you can also win some great prizes from our sponsors.

Quite a lot of the patterns showcased are also on sale during August.

The – Eloise (dolls, girls, ladies, bundle)
– Olivia (girls, ladies, bundle)
– Betty (only ladies)
– Summer Maxi Collection (only ladies)
– Meghan (dolls, girls, ladies, bundle)
– Emma (dolls, girls, ladies, bundle)
– Portia (dolls, girls, ladies, bundle) are also on sale. 

I would love for you to sew up something just for yourself.

My affiliate link to Rebecca Page patterns is,  https://rebecca-page.com?affiliates=132

Please visit all the stops on the Turning the Page: Sewing for the Changing Seasons Blog Tour with Rebecca Page. Don’t forget to comment on the blogs each day and enter a Rafflecopter giveaway for a chance to win some fantastic prizes from our fabric sponsors!

  1. August 20: Rebecca Page (Intro), Sewjourns, Soul fed on Thread
  2. August 21: Sarcastic Sewist, PatchWitch, Flaxfield Sewing by Anca
  3. August 22: Princesse et Tresors, Bellephant, The Scatty Sewer
  4. August 23: BigFlyNotions, Stitched by Jennie, Millie’s Place Handmade
  5. August 24: Sweet Sprocket, Australian Sewing, Advice & Inspiration, The Sewing Unicorn
  6. August 25: LIVIALITY, Diskordia’s Curvy Sewing, Simply Kyra
  7. August 26: Seams So Lo, Middle River Studio, Jot Designs

fabric sponsors .

Happy crafting.

Leanne.

 

Crystal Cove, how sweet she is.

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A simple but stylish cami top, WITH shape, how l do love this.  The Crystal Cove cami is a recent test garment designed by Kennis of Itch to Stitch.

This simple styled top has definition at the waist line, side darts give a really feminine shape which l really like, no looking pregnant and believe me you don’t want this nan looking like she is pregnant.  Yes this gorgeous top is suitable for all ages even we older ladies who chase little ones.

itch to stitch crystal cove cami silk pdfpattern pdf pattern

Such a quick sew you can make up in nap time and with instructions and pattern pieces for different cup sizes you have a simple stylish top in no time. My fabric for my casual top is a soft draping crepe.

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With an elegant overlay on the back the cami is suitable for casual or for a more formal occasion, make a statement with the spaghetti straps, luckily l had a bra near in colour so l didn’t even mind the little peak of the bra strap. The hem is rolled hemmed which l did on my overlocker  (serger), so easy and quick to do, no need to worry about that curved hem as the finish is smooth and even and QUICK.

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Choosing your fabric can take you from casual to more formal and even though it is currently winter for me l can layer and still wear out for date night and in an embroidered voile fabric it shines as formal wear.

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For the finish on my date night Crystal Cami l simply overlocked the hem then folded and hemmed, another quick neat finish.

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Honestly once you make one you don’t need to look at the instructions again, it’s that quick and easy to sew.  The longest part of the process of making my date night Cami was threading my dreaded overlocker when l didn’t realise that my thread had run out, argh.

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If you would like to support my pattern and fabric habit the link to the Crystal Cami with my aff link is

https://itch-to-stitch.com/product/crystal-cove-cami-digital-sewing-pattern-pdf/?affiliates=miller61

Link to the Itch to Stitch support group on facebook is

https://www.facebook.com/groups/ItchToStitchDesigns/

Happy crafting

Leanne.

 

 

A few hacks & mashes of RP patterns.

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Do you ever see a pattern and decide that you want something just a little different?  You see a couple of patterns and think well l can change it up a bit just because you can or you think you can.

Now, l for many years followed patterns to the T, l still do but as my sewing skills have improved l have become more adventurous and have wanted to just try and see if my ideas will work.  They don’t always work but if you don’t try you will never know.

Rebecca Page patterns are a great base to work with, they have enabled me to hack and mash the patterns with sometimes just a gentle tweek or a major shuffle to create something just a little different but totally wearable. Thanks Rebecca for your great patterns.

Here are some of my hacks and mashes & l will link up the patterns so you can hack & mash too, you will be surprised what you can create.

My first being the Pretty Party dress (free with the code in the group) with a peplum skirt, an easy hack just by adding the peplum to the bodice, you can easily do this by using this formula from Hand London https://byhandlondon.com/pages/circle-skirt-app

https://rebecca-page.com/product/ladies-party-dress-pattern/?affiliates=132

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I seriously do have a love for the Emma and l have hacked her a few times.  A side tie on the neckline and shirred waist changes the look completely.  The tie took a bit of calculation and fiddling around (l hate maths) but it worked in the end and was actually quite easy to do (in the end lol).

https://rebecca-page.com/product/ladies-high-neck-dress-pattern/?affiliates=132

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I decided l wanted a slimmer looking Emma so simply reducing the width of the front just a little gave me a slimmer fit.  Honestly l would not have wanted it any slimmer or the bodice would have been too firm across the bust but l just got lucky with this version.

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Another Emma favourite is my Gatsby dress that l made for my last cruise.  Having borrowed a dress and since l love cruises and had a few more booked and needed another dress l thought l had better make my own.  This is my modern inspired Gatsby dress using the Emma bodice attached to a pencil skirt using a cotton underlay with a black lace & gold embroidered overlay.  This would work well in knit with the new Dreamy Drape add on skirt.

https://rebecca-page.com/product/dress-pattern-pack/?affilliates=132

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A mash up of the Emma bodice with a little tweek and the Cerena pants and wow l was so happy with this version.  In bamboo knit it is so so comfy and fashionable at the same time.

https://rebecca-page.com/product/ladies-high-neck-dress-pattern/?affiliates=132

https://rebecca-page.com/product/ladies-romper-pattern/?affilaites=132

The Paris top (from the Paris party dress, free with the code in the group) with some gathered sleeves was a great addition for my wardrobe.  l hadn’t made the scoop neckline and found that it was quite flattering and on trend with the sleeve addition which l used from the Kingston jacket and a scarf for accessorising l was set for the cooler weather.

https://rebecca-page.com/product/paris-party-dress-ladies-pleated-skirt-and-top/?affiliates=132

https://rebecca-page.com/product/ladies-denim-jacket-pattern/?affiliates=132

paris bell sleeves

 

After making a Portia dress in knit l wanted a Portia top in woven and it was super  simple, just shorten the dress to top length or tunic length. I used a voile for my Portia top version.  The knit version dress is free on the website no code needed.

https://rebecca-page.com/product/ladies-portia-full-version/?affiliates=132

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My latest hack was to make some work out pants in spandex with the Pippa pants.  I love the Pippa pants but why not try them a different way, of course.  Now these were easy enough to hack but honestly l did make them a bit longer but the fit wasn’t quite right because the leg width is wider but by shortening them just a little made them absolutely wearable and l have worn them constantly to the gym and for training, yes training for Tough Mudder at the end of May 2018, l have done something similar so l should survive.

https://rebecca-page.com/product/stretch-pants-pattern/?affiliates=132  (quick they are presently on sale)

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These are my current hacks & mashes and l am sure there will be more to come.  I hope l inspire you to be bold be brave and create something new, l know that l could not have been able to create my versions if l hadn’t had such a great base of patterns to work from. Create away and l hope you share your versions in the group.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/mummykinsandme/

Happy crafting.

Classic styled Anna shirt by WBM.

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So it has been a while since l have blogged, still so much sewing done but little time to blog.  I have tested quite a few great patterns that deserve to be mentioned though.

Now we come to my most recent test of a garment, the Anna shirt by Wardrobe by Me.  Some skills l was sure l could do and some afford the opportunity to challenge myself to achieve the great finish that this shirt deserves.  Instructions enabled me to achieve a finish that l am quite proud of and a shirt that l am going to wear a LOT.

The Anna shirt is a button down shirt with options for a pointed or round collar, just a simple collar stand, long sleeves with cuffs and short sleeves.  Yoke and plain or back pleats,  something for all seasons and to suit any occasion.

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For my long sleeve Anna l chose a voile floral and a plain cotton for the collar and cuffs which gives a nice contrast, bright and cheerful for winter.

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Anna in short sleeve and just the stand with out the collar in rayon is super comfy and another great option available in the pattern.

Affiliate link to the pattern https://wardrobebyme.com/collections/blouse-pdf-sewing-pattern/products/anna-shirt-sewing-pattern?rfsn=297489.5288c

With a well drafted pattern with great instructions you too can be proud of your button down shirt.

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The Anna compliments my Slim fit Pants also by Wardrobe by Me.

There is also a matching shirt for the man in you life, the Jensen shirt, if you purchase both shirts there is a great discount, code is ‘jensen and anna’.  on sale until 28th April 2018,

Wardrobe by Me will be having a Sew a along so come along and join the fun  in Wardrobe by Me group https://www.facebook.com/groups/WBMpatternsupport/?multi_permalinks=2014842512069863&notif_id=1523884960369379&notif_t=feedback_reaction_generic&ref=notif    Sewalong begins the 26th April 2018.

Happy crafting.

 

Cerena Romper test.

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Test time again for Rebecca Page.  The Cerena Romper is a halter neck style romper with options for three lengths, shorts, knee length or full length pants and of course pockets too., there is also an option for top only.

I decided to try the shorts option, well this is not my usual style but l thought that this length would be ideal for summer fun and playing with my grandchildren.  We love to play by the creek and feed the ducks so short length was perfect option.

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There are options for the Cerena to be made in a woven or knit fabric.  I chose to make mine in a knit simply because l have so much knit that needed to be used.  The short romper was ideal for using up the smaller pieces of fabric that l had in my stash.  For my Cerena l chose a cotton jersey black knit for the shorts and a knit with minimal stretch for the top and they were an ideal combination.

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Comfy, cool and on trend the Cerena is suitable for all ages.  It is quite easy to wear the Cerena and wear your normal bra if that is how you feel more comfortable, just wear a little cardi over your Cerena.

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You can get your copy of the Cerena here.  rebecca-page.com/product/ladies-romper-pattern/?affiliates=132

Have fun sewing up a storm in the Cerena.

Happy crafting

Leanne

 

 

Arabella skirt

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A simple but stylish skirt by Rebecca Page pdf patterns. Ok you will say what is so special about this skirt? Of course you will say that many other designers have made exactly the same.  Well yes you could say that but the Arabella is available for sizes NB-12 Yrs for girls and XXS-5XL for ladies so you can have matchy mum and me outfits, no need to search anywhere else to get one for your little girl as well, they are all available in the one spot.

Instructions were easy to follow and fabric suggestions were appropriate.  Options for a regular or tall waistband and an added sash and pockets ensure some variations on this simple skirt, this in my opinion makes this very versatile for a simple casual skirt or a more elegant skirt for more formal wear. The suggested fabrics included describe the drape appropriately.  A lovely swishy skirt in rayon as l made makes the wearer feel quite elegant. Love it and l am generally not a maxi wearer but the drape and feel is very feminine.

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I made my Arabella in rayon and absolutely love it, l am not usually a maxi wearing kind of gal but lately l discovered the maxi and fell in love with them.  I always thought that l was too short to wear a maxi but discovered there were so many other women the same height as myself wearing maxi’s and they looked fabulous.  What was l thinking that l couldn’t wear a maxi,  this is the first of many to come.  The rayon fabric is so soft and drapes beautifully so having the gathers at the waistline it doesn’t flare at the hip as generously so it is quite flattering rather than being quite full and voluminous of course it will depend on the style and effect that you are seeking which will determine your fabric choice.

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Perfectly suitable for formal wear or a more casual occasion, the Arabella is your quick sew garment when you need something when the girls ring at the last moment catch up.I chose the high waistband option with a sash, although you cannot see the sash it ties and would showcase the waist if made in a contrasting colour,  the beauty of making for your self you can create your own style.  The sash is able to be tied at the front or back or if you want something a little more casual you can make without the sash.

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The Arabella is perfect for border prints, the skirt showcases it beautifully don’t you think.

I have made quite a lot of my wardrobe from Rebecca Page patterns, l do like that the patterns are diverse and don’t always follow the trend of other designers.  I can have something that is fashionable but unique in my wardrobe.  I have tested quite a few of Rebecca’s patterns, some l absolutely love and just a couple l found where not quite my style but l would not say that l don’t like them they just don’t suit me as much as l thought and honestly isn’t that the same with some clothing that we try on in the shops.  We will find something and have a moment of loving it until we try it on then go wow what was l thinking.

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After testing for Rebecca quite a few of the testers are now brand ambassadors which is quite an honour, we do get to choose what we would like to make which is quite generous of Rebecca and her team.

You can follow along with great support and encouragement in the fb group here.  https://www.facebook.com/groups/mummykinsandme/

Link to Arabella http://rebecca-page.com/product/ladies-maxi-skirt-pattern/

website http://rebecca-page.com/shop/

Happy crafting.

Leanne.

 

Chai – What a treat.

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Having applied to test for Itch to Stitch patterns by designer Kennis

Wong on several occasions l was actually quite surprised when l found

had been chosen to test her latest pattern the Chai shirt/dress.  The

Chai is a classic fitted style which can be interpreted as a vintage style

which has become quite fashionable.  The Chai is available in a digital

PDF pattern.

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Kennis designs her patterns for cup sizes.  so you can get a garment for

your dress size and also your cup size creating the perfect fitting

garment.  The Chai is designed for woven fabrics and l chose a

quilters cotton.  Features of the Chai Shirt and Dress include-:

  • A, B, C, D and DD Cups

  • Dress and shirt length options

  • Classic collar on collar stand

  • Sleeveless and gathered short sleeve options

  • Center front button closure

  • Easy-to-wear A-line skirt

  • In-seam pocket with dress option

  • High waistband that elongates the legs

  • Layers feature (print only the sizes you need)

 

The collar is sewn a little different to what l am used to but the finished

collar definitely is worth the effort as it gives a very polished finish.

The instructions certainly enabled me to create a garment to fit

perfectly.  Designed for intermediate sewing, do not be daunted by that

as many of the testers had not sewn collars or button holes and created

some very nice Chai shirt/dresses for themselves.  That is testament to

the great instructions provided in the pattern.

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My chosen option was a shirt and sleeves, enabling me to mix and

match with classic wide leg pants or skirt for an afternoon tea or a

more casual wear with jeans, great versatility.   For those who know me

they know l like options in a pattern and the Chai offers that, a dress

option will be next on my list.  I appreciate now what many have said

about Itch to Stitch designs, great quality tested patterns to create the

perfect fitting garment.

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The Chai shirt and dress is now available here  https://itch-to-stitch.com/product/chai-shirt-dress-digital-sewing-pattern-pdf/

 at a special release sale price of $9.60

 

Follow the blog on Itch to Stitch and get some great tips and see some

tester pics here.  https://itch-to-stitch.com/new-pattern-chai-shirt-dress/

You can also try some of Itch to Stitch free patterns on the website a

great way to test a designers patterns.

 

Itch to Stitch offers a group for support on facebook where you can get

lots of support here    https://www.facebook.com/groups/ItchToStitchDesigns/

happy crafting.

 

Leanne.

Studio Maxi, ooo love

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The Studio jumpsuit and dress pattern  by Sew Straight and Gather has won me over with the maxi.  When you have never worn a maxi before, well except on your wedding day all those many years ago, you make the Studio maxi and instantly fall in love that is saying something.

Instructions make this a very easy sew and the fit is amazing, have a look at some of the other testers pics and you will see why, they all look stunning.

This pattern offers heaps of options, two bodice styles and options for romper, jumpsuit or knee length or maxi length dress. Options for pockets is also available, Options galore, yay winner for sure.

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Terri from Sew Straight and Gather honestly puts so much effort into getting her patterns perfect that the fit is spot on gorgeous.  Having never worn maxi’s before l was somewhat reluctant in how this maxi was going to look as l had always considered myself too short to wear maxi’s, well how wrong l was because l love it.

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Simple elegance what is not to love.

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Don’t be daunted by the fitted style of the Studio as it creates an elegant silhouette which l found quite feminine.  I originally signed up to sew a knee length dress but was so glad that Terri allotted me to sew a maxi because l love this so much l made another.

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I have never worn a jumpsuit but after wearing my maxi and seeing all the talented testers who made a jumpsuit l am willing to give the jumpsuit a try.  Shows that you can always learn something and should be willing to try new styles because l have found a style l like with the Studio.

The Studio jumpsuit and dress releases with a super special price which l think is an awesome offer.  You can get the pattern here.  https://www.sewstraightandgather.com/product/studio-jumpsuit-dress/

Support is available in the facebook group here.  https://www.facebook.com/groups/1580120678932435/?fref=nf

Happy crafting.

 

Riviera Ruffle top, isn’t just for ruffles.

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Ruffles or no ruffles, well you can have them all.  The Riviera Ruffle pattern by Rebecca Page offers this stylish elegant top which is perfect for any formal occasion and the added option of bias panels give this top an edge of sophistication.

Wow was l quite surprised how much l like those ruffles.

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So versatile that l can wear the Riviera with almost anything and how l like the bias panel.  The panels in a contrast fabric also give another lovely contrasting detail.

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The ruffles are not daunting at all and are certainly suitable or casual wear as well.

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The Riviera also has options for regular side seams without the bias panels which gives more options.  This is my make on the plain Riviera which is perfect for wearing to the rodeo or country show or simply for casual wear.

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I have had so much wear from this top, simple but elegant but still suitable for casual occasions too.

riviera plain promo

The Riviera Ruffle pattern is available here.   http://rebecca-page.com/product/ladies-ruffle-shirt-pattern/

Rebecca Page patterns also offers the Riviera in NB-12 yrs and ladies sizes XXS-5XL.  There are several FREE patterns that you can choose which gives you the opportunity to try some of Rebecca Page patterns.

Happy crafting.