A Matching Three Piece!

Hello! I’m back to the land of wifi, blogging and sewing, after a lovely trip camping in South Wales. BEAUTIFUL area, and we had nicer weather than England did, would you believe it?! But now I’m back to normality; time to share something.

S, my eldest, has a new dress. She’s so happy! [Her top front tooth fell out a couple of days before I took the photos…! I’m just starting to get used to seeing that big gap now!]

Blue Ridge Dress

Do you recognise the pattern? It’s the Blue Ridge Dress – the brand new pattern by Hello Holli.

You may remember that I made one, as a pattern tester, for A. I am still in love with this dress; I put her in it an awful lot!

So I just had to make one for her big sister. This time the fabric is still cute but a tad more grown-up. She chose it; aghhh she’s growing up now, making her own fashion choices!

Blue Ridge Dress

The eagle-eyed among you will have noticed that she also has a matching headband and bag. More on them later…

I had 1m of the adorable owl fabric, which was enough to make it in her size. Which is Age 3! She’s 6!! Little skinny minny. It fits her perfectly around her chest. I was going to lengthen it a tad but I wouldn’t have been able to, so I made the most of the generous 6cm hem allowance and turned it up just 2cm. I think it’s fine for a summer dress!

I used up all the scraps immediately, which I was pretty impressed with. I decided on the spot to make a matching headband and bag. I actually made these before the dress – I love quick projects!

Blue Ridge Dress

I totally made up how to make the bag as I went along… I just cut shapes out of what fabric I had – and that was the size the bag was to be! It turned out narrow and long so I improvised with a flappy foldover top. Unique, hey?!

Floppy bag

The handle’s ends are enclosed in the side seams. It was cut from the length of fabric I had; and it turned out pretty perfect! To say she is happy with her bag would be an understatement.

Blue Ridge Dress

She’s also really happy with her headband – I just measured the sizes against one she already owns. It’s as wide as it could be due to the fabric available!

S chose the button on the dress. And I chose the red binding. I think we did pretty well design-wise!

This time round, instead of stitching the binding in the ditch, I slipstitched it by hand on the inside. This takes that bit longer, but I love the finish.

S's Blue Ridge Dress

A final back shot:

Blue Ridge Dress

Has anyone else got this pattern yet? If not and you have girls under 14 – why not?!

Beth x

P.S. Yes, she did enjoy posing for these photos!

Hello Holli Blue Ridge Dress [Pattern Tester Tour!]

I am so excited to share this dress with you. I tested a brand new pattern, the Blue Ridge Dress, from a brand new company, Hello Holli. And it is an EXCELLENT pattern. You might know that I’m quite pernickety when it comes to patterns; I do criticise them a lot… but this one really is fantastic. I love the dress and I love the pattern. (And I’m not just saying that because Holli is watching me, haha. I am honestly going to make loads of these dresses.)Blue Ridge Dress

The dress has a huge size range – 12 months to 14 years. I made size 2 for my 2 year old in a cute animal print cotton. She calls it her lion dress. I’m not sure why she can only see lions!

blue ridge dress

I had just 80-90cm of it because it was end of roll, but I managed to squeeze on the tunic length. (The pattern comes in two length options – tunic and dress.) The length is perfect. The hem comes with a generous 5cm seam allowance so I could actually take it down when it gets too short but the bodice still fits.

blue ridge dress

Sorry that it looks a bit creased – she had been wearing for some time before our little photoshoot!

It’s good for twirling! 🙂

blue ridge dress

What’s really great about the pattern is that all seams are enclosed; the bodice is lined and it just all looks so lovely inside as well as outside. I’ve probably mentioned more than once before that I love French seams!

Blue ridge dress

The neck and armholes are bound with bias binding, and there’s an added strip of it at the join of the bodice and skirt, just for decoration – I really like it. Some of the testers skipped that part, but I think it draws attention to the nice curve of the bodice.

blue ridge dress

The bias binding forms a button loop at the back. Sewchet, do you recognise the little bunny button?

blue ridge dress

The only step I didn’t enjoy was attaching the bias binding to the wrong side. Holli instructs you to stitch in the ditch – which gives a very nice finish. If you can do it nicely. I can never catch all the bias binding. So I ended up slipstitching it in the places I’d missed! Next time I will just slipstitch the entire length; with such a small dress it wouldn’t take too long, and it’s something to do sat outside in the sunshine!

But all in all it’s a very sweet dress, wouldn’t you agree? I honestly wouldn’t change anything about it design-wise.

blue ridge dressBeth x

PS. Head over to Holli’s intro post to find a code for 20% off! And she’s also running a giveaway where you could win the pattern (be quick though because it ends tomorrow (Saturday!)

PPS. Interested in the other testers’ versions? Check out the links below…

Paisley Roots | Plucky Momo | KaatjeNaaisels | Life With Zeke | chelsiebrady | Made by Sara | GlaMa Creations | Argyle + Pearls Bless by ToneRebel & Malice | Creative Needle and Threads | Just Add Fabric

“Spring Showers” Applique Tee

After my eldest daughter noticed the applique rainbow t-shirt in Issue 12 Love Sewing magazine last month, she immediately wanted one. I was glad because I wanted to make one anyway! What a cute design.

rainbow t-shirt in love sewing magazine issue 12

And I’m really happy with how it turned out. Luckily so is my little model!

Applique rainbow t-shirt

[By the way, from now on l will call my eldest daughter ‘S’, and my youngest ‘A’ since they are their first initials.]

So S, bless her, was looking at the photo in the magazine and said something along the lines of: “but I haven’t got a plain top. Oh well you can make the top as well.” She’s a sweetie. But I found this plain white one in Mothercare for only £2 so I didn’t have to bother. I had all the colourful fabrics in my scrap bag! 🙂

Applique rainbow t-shirt

I thought it’d be a bit of a faff cutting all the templates, bondaweb and fabric pieces out but I actually did most of it sat in the garden in the sunshine so I rather enjoyed it! The pieces are all individually bondawebbed and then sewn onto the t-shirt. I know I’ve said it before but I have to say it again – I absolutely love bondaweb. I don’t know how the t-shirt would have turned out if I didn’t use it! It holds everything in place, making it sooo easy to sew.

Having said that, the cloud wasn’t sooo easy. It’s – obviously – very bumpy so a lot of twisting and turning was needed. I went around it twice in the end to make it look more like it’s meant to be a bit scruffy – haha!

Applique rainbow t-shirt

The little raindrops were also pretty fiddly. After doing the first one I considered free motion sewing the rest on so that I wouldn’t have to turn the t-shirt round so much. But after doing another I just continued on as I began as I figured I’d done everything else the ‘normal’ way.

Applique rainbow t-shirt

I’m not too happy with the fraying of the sun; I’m hoping it doesn’t get too bad in the wash. And it will be washed a lot! The raindrops aren’t fraying yet, but I hope they survive too.

Applique rainbow t-shirt

But other than that, I’m quite in love with it. Thank you to Love Sewing magazine for the design!

Applique rainbow t-shirt

I’m actually in the process of debating with myself whether or not to renew my subscription with the magazine. It does have some good ideas and projects but at the same time there’s an awful lot that I know I won’t do – including a lot of the “free” patterns. I also still find a lot of mistakes in it – from grammar and spelling down to quite terrible misprinting, etc. All that annoys me. But I know if I don’t renew the subscription then the future issues will be fantastic!! Arghh what to do?!

Anyway, I hope you’re having a good week and the sunshine part of this t-shirt is out rather than the raindrops!

Beth x