Monday, February 11, 2013

Sew and Tell with the Anya Dress

Hope everyone stayed warm and dry this weekend.  I'm over the rain.  Please go away now.  But despite the rain, I had an awesome time with my husband this weekend.  Our church was one of the satellite locations for Jimmy Evan's Lifelong Love Affair Marriage Seminar.  Loved it!  Great information for all married couples, whether you are having trouble or just want to strengthen an already great relationship. Was anyone else a part of the conference this weekend? 

Other than that, I also did a little sewing.  I'm working on the Sophia's Open-Back Ruffle Dress from Create Kids Couture.  It's going to be super-cute when I get done!  I love sewing up all these spring-y clothes for my little Lu  :) 

The pattern we are featuring today is another great one for warmer weather!  Say hello to the Anya Dress from Petite Kids Boutique!!  This is a sweet little kimono-inspired wrap dress with a gorgeous wide sash.  There are several sleeve lengths available (short, 3/4, and long) so this pattern can be used year-round.  I've always loved all things Asian, and this dress is no exception.  For you beginners out there who tend to shy away from buttonholes and zippers... good news!!!... This pattern doesn't have either  :)  This dress is available in sizes 12m- 6 years.  So pretty!

Today's review is from Michelle P.  You can see her work at 3 Peaches Customs for Girls on Facebook. 
I reviewed the Anya Dress Pattern by Petite Kids Boutique.  The pattern is for a true wrap dress.  I used some fabrics that had Japanese girls on it to get a little kimono look.  The pattern took me about three hours, although, I didn't work three solid hours on it.  I have three small children, so it's difficult to sit for three hours to sew.  I needed one of those clocks they use in chess tournaments that start and stop to keep time!
I think this is a pattern that beginners could do.  The instructions are easy to follow, and the pictures are good.  Adding sleeves definitely adds a lot more time to the pattern.  I think I would love it sleeveless, but I felt we might like sleeves as it is very cold here.  I feel sleeves add some modesty, but you could also easily add a fitted shirt under the sleeveless version.
 I feel it runs true to size. It is not a roomy pattern in the bodice.  It needs to be fitted so it doesn't gap.  The skirt is nice and full.  One thing I did that the pattern doesn't tell you to do is to top stitch. I think it looks better that way, and it adds durability. 
One thing I would do next time is make the sash longer.  You had just enough to make that bow.  I think I would add about two to three inches to each of the lengths of the sash pieces.  It had as "option" to add snaps to the inside bodice to hold it closed.  I think this is an important thing to do to keep it closed properly, and again, to prevent gaping. 
You can make a beautiful dress with this pattern!  It is versatile with the sleeve options.  You could add trims and ruffles, too, if that's your style.  I left mine basically plain since the fabric I picked was quite busy.  Both of my girls said this dress was comfortable. 
Have fun sewing the Anya Dress!
Those little cuties look just beautiful in their Anya Dresses!  I love the bold print Michelle used.  It's the perfect fabric for this dress  :) 
If you've been inspired to sew your own Asian themed apparel, go ahead and get your copy of the Anya Dress for 25% off for the next few days!  We only keep the patterns we use for our Sew and Tell feature on sale until the next Sew and Tell review is published.  So be sure to get this one while you can! 
Here are a few of my other favorite Asian-themed clothing patterns you may want to check out!
This is the Little Chi Pao Dress from The Measuring Tape.  I love the mandarin collar and traditional Chinese bodice!  I know several people who have adopted little girls from China, and this would be such a special dress for them to dress their daughters in.  But little girls no matter where they are from would be beautiful in this dress!  The pattern is available in sizes 12m- 6 years. 
These little shoes take me to my happy place!  This pattern for the Baby Kimono Shoes is from Lena's Patterns.  How cute would it be to pair these up with one of the dresses above?  If you daughter has small enough feet, you can!  The pattern goes from NB- 24 months.  Please, someone make these shoes and an Asian-style dress and let me see pictures!  Pretty please?!
Alright ladies, don't forget to purchase your pattern for the Anya Dress while you can get if for only $5.25!!  Go sew something magical!!


Monday, February 4, 2013

Sew and Tell with the Allie Dress

Who is ready for another Sew and Tell Pattern Review?!  We are!!  How about the Allie Dress from Sew Sweet Patterns?  To be honest, I want this dress in my in size.  Seriously.  I've been loving tunic-style tops with skinny jeans and boots lately.  This would be perfect!  I guess I'll have to settle for making one for my daughter, instead  ;) 

Today's review comes from our friend Debbie F.  She sells her creations in her shop on Etsy.

I taught myself to sew and have now been sewing for 20 years.  I started sewing for my daughter when she was born, and now I sew for my granddaughter.  Madison, my granddaughter, wore this dress with leggings and boots for a "hip" fall trend at church the other day, and got so many compliments on it!
It took me about 5 hours to print, cut, and sew the dress up. The pattern pieces matched up perfect while I was cutting it out.  It’s an easy dress to sew, and a beginner should have no trouble at all.  I made the Allie Dress in a size 4 and out of quilting cotton fabric.   The sleeve length was perfect on her, and the dress ran true to size.
During construction, I did a few things that were different from the pattern.  I turned the edges under on the yoke facing even though the instructions didn't call for that.  I also used hooks and eyes instead of buttons on the back of the dress, but next time I will use the buttons as suggested. 
I really like the yoke style on the dress.  And it looks good with or without the belt.  I love the pattern and plan on making some more dresses with it! 

Sew Sweet Patterns has a rather large collect of patterns on our site.  Lots of cute girly things for you to whip up!  The Allie Dress comes in sizes 12m- 7yrs.  And I know I've said it before, but I love long-sleeved dresses.  This one is just too cute!  I like dresses that allow you to use a more than one print so you can give it some personality.  You can do the belt and yoke in the same fabric (as Debbie did) or use complimentary prints like in the photo at the top of the page.  This is another one of those patterns that you can dress up or dress down, depending on what sort of look you are after.  Choose a sophisticated print and pair with tights and some pretty little shoes for a great dressy-dress, or layer over a pair of skinny jeans and boots for a more casual look.  Either way, it will be a hit!  Head over to the website to purchase this pattern at a 25% discount for the next few days!!

Speaking of skinny jeans...

Check out these Lovely Rita's by Shwin Designs!  Just precious!  These come in sizes 12m- 5 yrs.  I love the detail of the button flap at the ankle, but those can be left off if you prefer.  These have a flat front with elastic in the back for a great fit.  Make these in stretch denim, cotton, linen, or other bottom weight fabrics.  These might be too cute to tuck into a pair of boots! 


We also have the Skinny Jeans from Peek-a-Boo Pattern Shop!  These are available in sizes 12m- 10 years AND you also get an 18" doll pattern included!  I like that this pattern can be used for both boys and girls, you definitely get your money's worth.  The Skinny Jeans have a faux fly and an elastic waistband with a front button.  These are made with stretch denim so they are comfortable to wear and totally cool! 

As always, we would love for you to share pictures of your creations so we can all "ooh" and "ahh" over them on our Facebook page! 
Go sew something magical!!