The Perfect Summer Sundress

This post is by Emily from Illinois.

I was inspired to make the SewBaby Reversible Sundress for my daughter after finding the quirky Ivy League Bees print by Jay McCarroll (of Project Runway fame) for Free Spirit. For the contrasting side we found some gorgeous Kaffe Fassett fabric in a bright garden print. This is a medium weight woven, not quite a home dec weave, but pretty sturdy. I was a little nervous that it would make the dress too heavy, but I think it gives the finished product some nice body and helps with skirt swing out.
Technique wise, I used a walking foot for sewing the front and back together. This made it easier for me to keep the pieces lined up perfectly, but a walking foot definitely is not required for this project. Before cutting the fabric I traced the 18 month size of pattern using Swedish tracing paper, so I can reuse the pattern for making gifts or larger sizes. I used 2 buttons back to back on both sides of the dress so it is truly reversible. Just be sure not to sew the buttons too tightly together. Leave some slack in the thread as if you were sewing on a coat button.
My daughter is 15 months old and I found the 18 month size to be generously sized. She'll be able to wear this dress well into the fall. It will look cute with a little long sleeve tee when the weather cools down. The pattern couldn't have been easier to follow and it sewed up in no time at all. The SewBaby Reversible Sundress is a perfect project for new sewists or for anyone who just wants an easy super cute dress!


Summer Tops: Burda 7486 and 06-2010-140

I bought this lovely Prada silk cotton voile and hunted for a loose fitting tunic top pattern to make it into.  I found Burda 7486 and thought it looked like it had interesting lines.  Although I'm a Burda magazine subscriber, I hadn't bought one of their envelope patterns in a while, and was surprised at how confusing I found it to be.

First of all, the printing was terrible- very, very faint, and nearly unreadable.  The type face is extremely small-  maybe like an 8 point.   There are three columns of instructions- a column each for French, English and Spanish, and then one column of illustrations.  Second, the illustrations were severely lacking, and weren't lined up with the instructions that they correspond to (although they are numbered, so you can figure that out).  There is an option to put this on the bias, as in the striped view, but no layout diagram to guide someone who would not know how to do that.  And when I saw both grainlines on the pattern pieces, I really had to scratch my head to figure it what they wanted.    For all of the flack that the American pattern companies get about their patterns, I have to say that this experience makes me appreciate all of the effort they put into their instructions a whole lot!

Anyway, enough complaining.  This is the top that I ended up with.  Not the best, but not the worst either.  I also made the same top out of a tiny lavender printed voile on a white background, that I will not show you.  My daughter said it looked like a nurses' smock on me, and she was right.  The fabric print was just way too small for my large frame.  I gave it to my oldest daughter who is teeny tiny, and it looks nice on her 21 year old figure.  If I can get her to model for a photo later, I will add it.

My next Burda experience is a good one!  I liked all of the Plus section in the June 2010 issue of Burda Style, and decided to try out this one for the off the shoulder peasant top- it is #140 and comes in sizes 44-52.  I had a hot pink silk linen blend that struck me as something that would work, and this is what it ended up looking like on me:
I'm really happy with it!  I added a couple of inches to the hem, and it is still a little shorter than I'd like, but other than that, I'd love to make it again.  The instructions in the magazine, although unillustrated, were perfectly fine!  I did shorten the elastic around the top by about 6 inches, because it just didn't look very gathered at all, at the length that they had recommended.  However, I may go back and add those 6 inches back in, as it wants to creep back up to my shoulder, and maybe if I had a little more elastic, it would stay on the arms as intended.  So, I highly recommend this pattern if you have the June 2010 issue.


Timeless Treasures Sample Giveaway

Timeless Treasures has several new fabric lines out.  They are so pretty in person.  The colors are rich and saturated, and the hand so soft, that we couldn't resist playing around with them.

Shirley, my assistant, loves to make bags, and she chose the Purple Berkeley line to make a sample of our Double Duty Bag above.

Shirley's mother-in-law, Ruth, made several samples from the Momo line:  The green booties are from our Snap Happy Bootie pattern,  the yellow backpack is from our Totpacks pattern, and the black bib is from the Hug-Me-Bibs pattern.

I chose the Berkeley Blues collection to make this Easy Pieces Jumper and Easy Pieces Pants sample outfit.  It's a size 4T.

The great folks at Timeless Treasures displayed these samples at the Spring Quilt Market, but now they are back in our hands, and we are ready to give them away! (Just the samples, not the fabrics!)

Give-Away Guidelines:
To register for the giveaway, just leave a comment on my blog, and sign-up to be a Follower of this blog or Like us on Facebook!  Tell us which sample you would like best to win.  (Please make sure there is a way we can contact you.)  We'll also include a copy of the pattern with the sample, so that you can make your own!

Comments will close on Tuesday, June 15th at 10 pm CST.  We'll choose the winners on Wednesday, June 16th!

In addition, take 10% off any of our Timeless Treasures fabrics until June 15th, using the coupon code TT10.

June 17th- Congratulations to our winners- Lanie, Juanita, Faye and Jenny!  Faye- please contact us, as there was no contact info listed.

Kind regards,