3/17/2015

{Women's} Thumbs Up Tee by OUSM - review

Well, not only did I get to test the boys pattern by the same name, I also got to test the women's pattern.  Yay!!!  :)  I was in the first round testing, so she changed a few things for the final pattern.  She increased the length, so rather than it being a long tunic/mini dress, it is more of a dress length (as well as the normal shirt length option).  She also included the additional option of bands at the bottom and a banded short sleeve option as well, not to mention a turtleneck.

Let me tell you, those thumbholes are a lot easier the second time around when you know what you're doing, but you still need to mark your fabric otherwise it is easy to get confused.   While I love, love, love the thumb holes, I think I might have to make the short sleeve version because it turned out really cute on the testers!




I upcycled a maxi dress, so the fabric already had all that piecing (I did not do that because who has the time to fiddle with that?!).  After I made it all up and was sewing the last stitches, it dawned on me how much it looked like the one I made my son.  Thankfully he's okay being matchy-matchy and thought it was cool.  :)

Now, for being a dress, this was too short for my taste, so I'm glad she lengthened it!  Other than that, the fit was really near perfect.  Oh, and please look away from my imperfect neckline.  I screwed up when I was topstitching, so it puckered and I did not feel like unpicking a whole bunch of stitches.  I still wear it though.  :)  But when I wear it, I wear jeans under it.  I keep meaning to take the hem up a little so it's more of a tunic length, but haven't bothered to do that yet.
This is the way it gets worn now.  :)
Overall, it was a great testing experience, and I appreciate that Rachel didn't want to release it until it was perfect (which I definitely think it is now).  She has spent countless hours working on the pattern and actually listens to the feedback, which is huge in my book.  You can purchase the women's pattern here or go for the bundle of both the women's and kid's pattern.


We give it four thumbs up!  :)

My little photographer had to get in on the photos, too!  





3/01/2015

#DisneySide Celebration

I was fortunate to have gotten picked to host a #DisneySide party this year.  Unlike last year where all the participants received the same items, this year they mixed it up a little bit.  Some received a Cars or Princess Sophia theme, others received items related to all of the Disney villains, and then others (like me) received a more generic box of Mickey and Minnie items.  Since we used the items in the box to throw a birthday party for Grahm, it's a good thing we didn't get the Princess Sophia box!  :)  Although the Minnie items we received (snack boxes, etc.) were not used for his party, they will be saved for his little sister's 5th birthday later this summer.  You can never have too much Disney!

The day before, Belle and I made the cupcakes.  We used the Duff Tie Dye cake mix that was provided in our box and it turned out beautifully!  It was fun, but definitely a little more time consuming than just pouring batter into a cupcake tin.  You had to alternate the colors, so it got a little messy.  But with 6 colors in the box, that meant we each got to pick a cup with the leftovers of the raw batter.  :)  The end result was worth all the extra effort, and they tasted really good and were super moist.  (Hey, I had to try one before the party to make sure they were safe to eat!)





I put some of them in the Wilton Mickey cake pan (which was also provided in the box, but I was too intimidated to attempt to frost it so it would look like his face), which served as a good cupcake holder.  :)  They were a big hit with the kids.  The box made over 24, which was a nice surprise.  However, the only thing I disliked was that I had to go online to find the directions to make the cupcakes.  They only have directions for making a cake.  Turns out, the only thing different is the baking time, which was reduced to about 18 minutes.




The girls decorated the basement for the party, and they did a great job.  We were sent everything we needed for a party: tablecloth, plates, napkins, cups, decorations, etc., all Mickey themed, of course!  We also had a big giant Mickey Mouse head for "Pin the smile on Mickey", but I had forgotten to take a picture of it.  The girls even tried out the Disney World Bingo game.  It was a very close game!


You have to watch Disney shows at a Disney party :)


The girls are more than happy to pose for a picture :)

All in all, the kids had a great time.  But who wouldn't when you mix cousins and Disney together?!  You can't help but smile.  :)  Thank you Disney for providing all the things to make a great time even better.


*All items provided to me by BSM Media for review purposes.  All comments are my own.*

1/18/2015

Thumbs Up Tee by OUSM - review


I was asked to help test the Thumbs Up Tee by OUSM (Once Upon a Sewing Machine).  It goes from 12 months - 12 years...you've gotta love that huge size range!  And can I just say, I LOVE working with knits!  I find it is so much more forgiving than woven fabric.  Also, there is no need to hem them.  Granted, it looks nicer when you do hem, but when I am in a rush or am just being lazy, it still works.

Now, this shirt is quickly becoming a favorite of my son's.  My other son has requested one even.  I think the thumb hole is their favorite feature, by far.  It's definitely pretty cool!  To go along with the pattern, they made a YouTube video for the thumb hole cuff instructions.  There is a mini tutorial at the beginning if you want to make a cuff for any shirt, not just their pattern.


There is an accent piece on the sleeve, which is good for using up scrap fabric.  However, I ended up using my main fabric for the accent piece because I didn't have enough of it for the longer part of the sleeve.  By doing it that way, it looks more like a layered short sleeve.

I was really quite pleased with the pattern.  It's always nice when a tester pattern works out the first time around, and only needs small tweaks.  Now, this is a more slim fitting/athletic fit shirt.  If you wanted it looser, I would just go up a size in the width.  She has the option to print in layers, which I love!  It saves so much ink and is a lot quicker to cut out since you don't have to keep track of which line to cut.  

1/06/2015

Extraordinary Girl pattern by Filles a Maman - review

I had the opportunity to test the newest pattern by Filles a Maman - Extraordinary Girl - which is an update to her Julia Sweater pattern.  It goes from 12 months up to 14 years, so a huge size range for the price.  It only took me 1 1/2 hours from cutting the pattern out to finishing the last stitch.  I love the itty bitty pocket in the front.  And the color blocking on the front helps to break the shirt up and not be just a regular t-shirt.  I also like the look of the overlapping collar.  Some testers used a different color for the back, and when it overlapped to the front it looked really neat.


The fit was pretty spot on with her measurements.  I made a straight 7 for her (she usually wears a 7/8 in RTW clothing).  She ended up wearing it all day and said how "comfy" it was when she put it on.  The sleeves fit her well, but I believe Mel (the designer) was going to make them a smidge longer.


Another thing I love is the longer hem in the back, although it's kind of hard to see in this picture though.  This seems to be a more popular hemline lately, and I hope it stays around.  It's really cute and makes it more feminine looking.  One of the testers just cut straight across (although there is no cutting line to do that, she just winged it) and made a shirt for her son.  It turned out really cute!


Currently, the top is on sale for an introductory price of $6.95.  After that, it will go up to the regular price of $9.

1/05/2015

3 down, 97 to go! :)

I am off to a good start!  I have finished 3 patterns already, all with my old patterns and all with my current fabric stash.  Yay!!  I made myself the Centerfield Raglan shirt by Greenstyle, and I absolutely love it!  I made it one size larger so that it fits more like a t-shirt (it is actually meant to have a fitted look, though).  I had absolutely no problems sewing it up, so I can see myself making more.



Another item I made for myself is the free Scarf Neck Cardigan pattern from Swoon.  Attaching the neck/scarf part was a little confusing, but now that I know how it goes together it makes perfect sense.  My oldest requested one just like it, but in a different color.  She's just not a plain brown kind of girl.  I made it using fleece, so sized up so that it wasn't tight.  I made it so that I have something nice to wear around the house when I'm cold, so that I don't have to wear my red Mickey Mouse robe (that was handed down to me from my mom) during the middle of the day.






I also made the Jolly Roger Raglan by Patterns for Pirates for Casey.  I had cut it out a few months ago, but never sewed it together.  No clue why not. It was an easy sew.  I'm thinking of making him a pair of knit shorts or pants to match so that he can use the set as pj's this spring/summer since the shirt is still a little long on him.  I could easily hem it some more, but I'd rather hold onto it for later.




1/02/2015

New Year, Old Stash

Well, I am excited for this new year.  I am planning on only sewing from my stash...both my fabric stash and pattern stash.

Sew Your (Pattern) Stash:  The goal is to sew the patterns you already own and have not yet sewn, which for me is quite a few.  I will have no problem making it to the end of the year doing this, I'm sure.  The only exception to this is when I test patterns for designers, but I don't pay for those patterns anyway.  The group has themes for each month, and January is women's patterns.  I have a lot that I have not made for myself because I tend to make clothes for the kids instead.  But, I already have two printed and cut out to start on tonight.  

The 100 Item Sewing Challenge:  The goal with this group is to make 100 items from your current fabric stash without buying any extra.  If fabric is needed (if the pattern calls for 2 yards and you only have 1), then you are allowed to buy the extra.  But I'm really hoping to get by with buying as little fabric as possible this year.  I have quite a bit of fabric, a lot of which is fleece in 3 totes.  I just would like my fabric more manageable and not in different places (drawers, closets, under the bed, stacked up against the wall, etc.).

Here's hoping I can save lots of money this year!  :)