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PATTERN REVIEW: The Fancy Flounce Skirt by Little Kiwi's Closet


By now, you may know both of my daughters are completely skirt-obsessed, and I have to admit, I love making them!  When I got the opportunity to review the Fancy Flounce Skirt by Little Kiwi's Closet, I couldn't resist!  I knew my daughters would love it and I just had to see how it was made.

The Fancy Flounce is quite flouncy -- 16 to be exact!  It's a super fun skirt with an elastic/knit waistband that swishes when you walk .  And construction is easier than you think!


Pattern Details
  • Sizes 6/12m - 12 Girls
  • Pattern pieces: 2 pieces, nested in size categories to reduce pages, minimal color ink usage
  • Tutorial style: Step-by-step with real color photos --- very easy to follow along!
  • Charts/diagrams included: Yardage, pattern layout/print guide, sizing chart, cutting chart (waistband and lining), cutting layout diagram
  • Pattern level: Adventurous beginner
  • REQUIRED: Serger with rolled hem feature

The back looks just like the front.

As I mentioned above, construction is easier than you think.  It honestly, gets a bit rhythmic as you repeat a few processes 16 times!  This skirt has been on my to-do list for a few weeks now and honestly, seemed kind of daunting.  But this morning, with my looming deadline of this post, it was crunch time!  Yep, I cut this skirt out this morning, sewed it up, and was ready for pictures after school all while keeping my 4 year old entertained (which is no easy task... haha). So I cut, I roll hemmed, and I connected 16 times in a row and before I knew it, I was ready to cut my lining!  Although her waist measurement put her in a size 2 (she almost 6... but sooooo slim), I opted for the wide elastic waist option for sizes 5 and up.

There are a few tips/recommendations I have: 1) I'd use the same fabric for both the flounces and connector pieces. (Sorry, I'm OCD..LOL)  2) I'd use fabric that is yarn-dyed so it's the same color on the backside. (again, OCD)  3) I found it easier to hug the curve on the rolled hem if I kept my knife engaged. 4) I starched my flounces and connector pieces and I think it made them stiffer than intended so skip the starch!

Overall, it was faster than I thought to make this skirt, my daughter loves it and can't wait to wear it to school tomorrow. The tutorial was super easy to follow too!  If it's cold where you live, it'd be adorable over the Skinny Legs Leggings (reviewed HERE)  


Guess what?!  There just so happens to be a Sew Along starting up for the Fancy Flounce Skirt in the Little Kiwi's Closet Pattern Group.  It starts the 22nd and runs through the 28th -- join the group for full details!!  And snag the code above to save 20%, of course.

Important links




See ya!!






PATTERN TEST: The Trendsetter Dress by Little Lizard King

Bodice: Simple | Straps: Straight | Skirt: Fancy with Lining

Swoon.

Have you ever looked at a pattern and known exactly which fabrics you'd use -- within mere seconds of seeing it?  Picking fabrics usually takes me f-o-r-e-v-e-r until I saw...

 The Trendsetter Dress by Little Lizard King

I mean, really, this bodice was practically screaming for the scraps of my black and white damask, leftover from my Jenny Dress by Sis Boom (read about it here)!

Bodice: Simple | Straps: Straight | Skirt: Fancy with Lining

Pattern Details:

  • Sizes 6m - 8, plus doll-sized!
  • Bodice Options: Gathered or Simple
  • Strap Options: Straight, Straight with Flutters or Criss Cross
  • Skirt Options: Fancy with Underskirt & Lace, Fancy with Lining, Simple with Underskirt, Simple
  • Pattern Pieces: NONE to print, all cuts are in measurement charts
  • Tutorial Style: Easy to follow, step-by-step directions with real photos
  • Charts included: Size/Finished Measurements, Yardage, and Cutting Charts
  • Pattern Level: Beginner


Bodice: Simple | Straps: Straight | Skirt: Fancy with Lining

Every little girl needs a fancy dress "just because", right?  Haha!  She had fun getting all dolled up, including a little manicure while her big sis was at school.

This pattern has so many options, but along with my fabric choice, I had a vision.  I knew I wanted to showcase the print of the damask on the bodice so I carefully "fussy cut" the front, paying close attention to seam allowances so my print would be centered just right.  Because the back is elasticized, I opted for a solid black back.  The straps are looped in the back and close with a small sewn snap.  The skirt portion is the Fancy with Lining option with two layers of nylon chiffon and has an underskirt of black quilter's cotton.

Bodice: Simple | Straps: Straight | Skirt: Fancy with Lining

But, with a simple switch of fabrics, the swoon-worthy party dress is now a sweet and simple frock perfect for backyard tea parties and playdates in the park!

Bodice: Simple | Straps: Straight | Skirt: Simple

If you didn't catch it, I adore the simple bodice because it allows me to showcase my fabric, such as this adorable little pink alligator.  I also opted to use the simple straps as they are more car seat friendly, in my opinion.

Bodice: Simple | Straps: Straight | Skirt: Simple

For added details, I sewed a tiny white button on the outside of the strap where the snap is sewn underneath, ric rac at the top of the front bodice and a turquoise button to add a pop of color against the light pink gingham. I also cut the pink gingham for the front bodice on the bias for a bit of visual interest.


Seriously, this pattern is FAB!!  You will not be disappointed... pinkie promise!!

Important links: 

*Don't forget about the Buy 4, Get the 5th Pattern FREE (equal or lesser value) deal!

Join us: LLK Cafe
Join the rest of the LLK Fans and show off your creations, ask questions, and hear about new releases!


SPOTLIGHT: Stitch Box Monthly - Anniversary Edition


Yay for happy mail!!!  Stitch Box Monthly is such a fun surprise and a great way to treat yourself (or your favorite seamstress... hint, hint) to some new sewing yummies.  This is the third box I've received (read about Box 1 here & Box 2 here) and each time, I've received things I've never used before and have now fallen in love with.  Seriously, you need to sign up!!

In case you've missed my other posts (tsk, tsk.... click the links above ... LOL), here's what the Stitch Box Monthly is all about:

  • Stitch Box Monthly is a mystery box of sewing goodies that shows up in your mailbox each month (or however long you have signed up for).  Each box has a theme and the supplies inside revolve around that.
  • Boxes are $35 including shipping (US pricing-recurring subscription), but you can get the boxes as low as $25/month if you prepay for the entire year.   [International shipping also available, see website]
  • Stitch Boxes contain at least $40 worth of sewing supplies -- 1-2 yards of designer fabric, sewing pattern, and a few notions 

Before I get down to the good stuff, this month marks the 1-year anniversary for Stitch Box Monthly!


Eeeks, I can't handle the cuteness!!!  When I tore into opened my Stitch Box Monthly (which was actually a padded poly bag this time since the goodies couldn't fit into the normal box), I loved it!!

Here's a rundown of this month's contents*:

  • 2 yards of designer fabric -- Bandana by Me and My Sister Designs
  • Bonus yard of designer fabric from a previous month -- I received Beauty Queen by Jennifer Paganelli (June 2014 box)
  • Made for Mermaids Sophie Dress PDF Pattern
  • 1.5 yards of adorable flower ribbon trim
  • 2 oz of Grandma's Secret Miracle Moisturizer

*Due to the large number of orders, the first collection of included fabric ran out (Daysail by Bonnie and Camille) 
which was replaced by Bandana by Me and My Sister. 
Some boxes also contained Mary Ellen's Best Press in lieu of the moisturizer.


Wowsers!! After I stopped marveling at my new pretties, and lathering my hands in my new lotion, I set out to get my plan together.  In previous boxes, I've usually just picked one of my girls to sew for, but I thought the two Me and My Sister Designs Bandana prints would make adorable coordinating dresses.  By adding in some solids and dots found in my stash, I was able to s-t-r-e-t-c-h my box as far as it could go.

As fate would have it, I happened to have some scraps of the exact shades of blue and turquoise found in the bow fabric.  My youngest is blonde with gorgeous blue eyes and I knew this would be the perfect pairing for her.  I used the included Sophie Dress  - and decided I would embroider her initial on the center panel.  I chose the Elegant Scroll (Small) Font by Itch2Stitch.

The *one* time I can't get her to show her pretty blue eyes...LOL

I originally made the dress with the included 3/4 length sleeves, but then realized that Easter is sometimes rather warm here in the South, and then remains hot the rest of the summer.  I contacted Megan of Made for Mermaids to see if she had shorter sleeves and they were in testing!!! She was so kind to send the Add-On Pack my way -- thank you soooo much, Megan!!  Because my dress was already complete, the only sleeve option (without redoing the entire bodice) was the short sleeves.  I added a flat band of the skirt fabric to tie it all together.  Now the dress can be worn all summer long!


My oldest is a beautiful brunette with chocolate brown eyes and loves pink so I picked out the cherry print for her (sorry, but the J. Pag Beauty Queen is mine......all mine bahahaha) and just happened to have scraps of coordinating pink/white polka.  The ribbon trim tied her dress all together.  Truth be told, that ribbon trim is glued on.  HA!  I tried topstitching it, but you could see needle marks, so I carefully figured out where I needed it to go, got out my tacky glue, and voila - perfectly trimmed bodice.  I also embroidered her initial on the center panel and sewed up the short sleeves for her with a coordinating flat band.


Since I had leftover ribbon trim, I used a bit to make a little bow for her newly-cut locks.  It was the perfect accessory!


My girls just love their coordinating dresses!  I thought the line of fabric was so fitting for them (Me and My Sister Designs) --- they often refer to themselves as "Best Sisters" -- which makes my heart so happy!!


So, the box wasn't used entirely on my girls --  I have used the Grandma's Secret Miracle Moisturizer pretty much daily since I got it.  I love that it's a lightweight, non-greasy lotion!  There's no overpowering scent either.  And honestly, I have to hide this lotion as my 4 year old is a lotion stealer.


Last, but not least, this beauty of a fabric (Beauty Queen by Jennifer Paganelli) will become something for me.  I haven't quite decided what it will be and with fabric this gorgeous, you can't be hasty in your decisions.  


I was thinking of a Caroline (Mouse House Creations) or possibly a Jenny or Angie (Sis Boom) in tunic length.  Or, I could possibly make it into a purse to carry!  Leave a comment below with your suggestions!

Thanks, Stitch Box Monthly --- I had SEW much fun!!

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How to sign up*:

  • Signing up for Stitch Box Monthly is easy!  
  • Head to www.stitchboxmonthly.com to choose a 1, 3, 6. 12 month subscription or choose a recurring subscription every month
  • Add in your shipping info
  • Pay 
  • Wait by your mailbox for your surprises!
*Orders received by the 20th each month are shipped at the beginning of the next month. 
Orders received the 21st or after are shipped out the following month (ie. order March 21st through April 20th to be shipped early May).

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*****If you sign up for April's Box, you'll get it just in time for Mother's Day --- seems perfect to me!*****


WARNING: Spoilers ahead!



So, I messaged Katie, the owner of Stitch Box Monthly to see if she'd give me any hints for the upcoming boxes!   Soooo, here are some sneaks :)

March Boxes (last day to order is March 20th): Be on the lookout for Australian fabric designers, Ella Blue and one of my favorite pattern designers, Brownie-Goose!

April Boxes (order March 21st - April 20th): Get excited for some yummy fabric by the talented Tula Pink!!!


*Disclaimer:  In exchange for my review, I was shipped a complimentary Stitch Box.  All thoughts and opinions are mine.  I received no further compensation, other than hugs and kisses from my daughters for their new dresses :) 

Top Stitchers: Season 1 Contestant



I've been lucky enough to be part of the Pattern Revolution team since it's inception (nearly 2 years ago).  I often wonder how I got so lucky to join the team, as I had literally been sewing less than a year at that point.  But, maybe, just maybe, it was partly due to my obsessive "hacking" of the only shorts pattern I owned, Brownie-Goose Summer Sailors (blogged HERE and HERE).

Patterns have always been a blank canvas for me.  I've never liked to be contained inside the confines of the box, so to speak (unless I'm testing a pattern, of course).  When Becca posed the question in the Pattern Revolution group, "What is your sewing superpower?", I knew it was hacking patterns.

Sooo, here's my announcement!!  I'm competing in Season 1.  Basically, my challenger (Amy of Friends Stitched Together) and I are given the same prompt (think Iron Chef concept, but involving sewing) and we will be judged on several criteria.  Head over HERE to read the full details!

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Here's our prompt: 

~ April Showers ~

"April Showers bring May flowers" - but why wait a month for sunshine and blooming gardens to look fabulous?? Your child will be the most fashionable puddle-jumper there is when you hack two or more apparel* patterns to create a full rainy day ensemble. *non-outerwear patterns only - let's really challenge ourselves! 

Remember! As a Hacker contestant, your objective is to find the untapped potential in a pattern, and use it as your blank canvas to paint your masterpiece upon.

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This should be interesting, seeing as I've never allowed my girls to jump in puddles.  (The mere thought of it makes my anxiety sky-rocket! LOL) 

I've got my ideas brewing and my fabrics picked!  Any guesses to the direction I may be headed?

Stay tuned.... and be thinking of playing along at home!! Each theme will have a linky party :)









Tutorial: The Perfect Ten Knit Top - [Hacked Again]

~ Pattern by Little Lizard King ~


I just couldn't resist!!  One of my favorite things to do is to hack patterns -- not because I don't love the original patterns because I do!  Sometimes though, inspiration strikes (like on the way to my daughter's school) and I just have to make it happen.

Pattern: The Perfect Ten Knit Top by Little Lizard King
Sizes: 12m - Girls 14
Features: 6 bodice options and 4 sleeve options plus 5 sleeve lengths, 2 hem options and 2 neckband binding options


Despite the million (or so) ways to personalize this awesome pattern, I have found yet another option and it's way too easy not to share!

  • Visit my Colorblocking Tutorial for the Perfect Ten Knit Top and follow steps 1-3, making sure you are using the regular hemline option for your original pattern piece.
  • Now you should have your "New Top Bodice" cut from your fabric.  
  • In Step 4, cut out the "New Bottom Bodice" for the pattern piece only.  DO NOT cut your fabric yet!
  • We are going to double the width of the "New Bottom Bodice". 
  • Fold your fabric in half (stretch is cross-grain), and then take the folded edge and fold it again (stretch is still cross-grain), but do not make the second fold any wider than your pattern piece.
  • Cutting the bottom 2 layers of your double-folded fabric only, cut out your "New Bottom Bodice".  The original fold should be just under the right hand edge of your pattern piece and will NOT be cut.
  • Take your "New Bottom Bodice" (that is now double the original width) and run a gathering stitch along the top edge.
  • Gather to fit the bottom edge of the "New Top Bodice".
  • Attach the gathered bottom to the top, RST (right sides together), finish the edge, and press the edge upward toward the neckline.  Topstitch.
  • Repeat with back bodice.
  • Resume following the Perfect Ten Knit Top pattern for the remainder of the construction - being certain to match the seams along the side!

* This method of construction still allows you to use the front bodice bow option included in the pattern.



So easy, right?!   I hope you've enjoyed my latest pattern hack!!  If you ever have any questions, don't hesitate to find me -- I'm always around!


Important links: 

*Don't forget about the Buy 4, Get the 5th Pattern FREE (equal or lesser value) deal!

Join us: LLK Cafe
Join the rest of the LLK Fans and show off your creations, ask questions, and hear about new releases!

Enter by March 1st for a chance to win!! Read LilyShine's Blog for more details!


I have so much love for the ladies behind Little Lizard King!
They definitely bring out my creative side!





BLOG TOUR: The Perfect Ten Knit Top

~ Pattern by Little Lizard King ~




Hi there!! I am so excited to be on Little Lizard King's Perfect Ten Knit Top Blog Tour!!  When this top was in testing, I pretty much begged Cassie to let me colorblock my version.  She said yes -- as long as I agreed to share my tutorial during the blog tour.  Soooo, here I am!!  Let's get this party started!


Colorblocking is actually rather easy! Follow these simple steps, and you'll want to colorblock  ALL.THE.THINGS!

How to Colorblock the Perfect Ten Knit Top*
*these instructions are using the hemband option for the third color

Once your bodice pieces are colorblocked, sew together according to the pattern instructions.  If you would like to colorblock your sleeves like I did, simply repeat the concept on your sleeve pieces.  I used the short-sleeved and 3/4-sleeve lines provided and simply added my seam allowances (instruction 2) to each "new" pattern piece.  Once your sleeves are pieced together and your seams are topstitched, sew according to the pattern instructions.  
My daughter has so much love for her new shirt!


Judge's score: 


For more Perfect Ten inspiration, visit these great blogs participating in the tour!!

JAB Creations | Harper Creek Boutique | Beri Bee Designs
Daydream Believers | Stitched by Crystal | Chasing Mermaids
That's Sew Kari | Blink: Life & Clothing | Lily Shine Boutique
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If you haven't purchased your pattern yet, click HERE!

After you sew it up, be sure to show it off in the LLK Cafe!
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